Florida gov suggests charging marijuana companies more to do business

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Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis believes medical marijuana businesses need to pay more to do business in the state.

“These are very valuable licenses,” the governor told reporters, according to the News Service of Florida.

“I would charge them an arm and a leg. I mean, everybody wants these licenses.”

DeSantis did not say if he specifically was talking about medical marijuana companies currently doing business in Florida or if he was discussing new entrants into the state market.

The governor made his comment in the same week that marijuana multistate operator MedMen Enterprises finished its exit from the Florida market with the closing of the sale of its assets for $67 million.

The medical marijuana companies operating in Florida each paid slightly more than $60,000 in 2015 to sell low-THC marijuana, the News Service of Florida reported.

The businesses pay $60,000 every two years to renew their licenses, and those licenses can sell for more than $40 million, according to the news outlet.

“Why wouldn’t we take the opportunity to make money for the state based off those?” DeSantis said.

“But I do think that would require a statutory change (by the Legislature), and I don’t think that’s something we could just do through administrative rule.”