Because Florida lawmakers in Tallahassee failed to reach an agreement on rules to govern the state’s medical cannabis industry, the state health department is going ahead without them.
The Department of Health issued a public notice that it intends to develop MMJ regulations without input from lawmakers, meaning the Sunshine State’s medical cannabis industry could either get much bigger or stay exactly the same size with no real debate or input from stakeholders.
Seven licensed MMJ producers currently serve the entire state, although a judge recently recommended that the number of licensees be increased to nine.
And while many existing cannabis companies – as well as in-state firms that have been waiting for years for an opportunity to enter the market – may have their fingers crossed that the DOH will issue even more marijuana business permits, the chances of that happening seem slim.
There’s also a possibility the Florida Legislature could reconvene this summer for a special session to hash out more precisely how the MMJ industry will operate.