The group pushing for a constitutional amendment to legalize recreational cannabis in Florida is halfway to its goal of getting the bill passed on next year’s ballot.
According to Florida News Servicesupporters of the proposed amendment “have submitted over 420,000 valid petition signatures to the state” and in 2024 “must submit at least 891,589 signatures to participate in the ballot”.
“Last month, the commission exceeded the threshold of 222,898 signatures required to initiate a significant Florida Supreme Court review of the proposed ballot text,” reported the news service.
Smart and Safe Florida, the group behind this effort, has significant backing from medical cannabis company Trulieve, which has a significant presence in the Sunshine State.
Smart and Safe Florida launched their campaign last summer.
Trulieve CEO Kim Rivers said at the time, “We came in with a mission to provide access to quality products that are safe and have the right value proposition. It will put people in control of their medical journey in the age of.” “I don’t think it will change here. So expanding access to virtually safe and legal products is our core, and this is what allows us to continue.”
Trulieve donated $5 million last summer when the campaign launched.
According to the Florida News Service, The company “has spent $25 million on its Smart & Safe Florida initiative at the end of January.”
The amendment would legalize the possession and consumption of cannabis by adults 21 and older in Florida and set the framework for a state-regulated cannabis industry.
Specifically, this action will allow the state’s existing medical marijuana establishments to transition to recreational marijuana dispensaries.
Florida legalized medical marijuana in 2016.
“One of the interesting aspects here is that [a] It is the medical cannabis market and there are hundreds of thousands of patients in Florida who use medical cannabis on a regular basis. It’s a little bit unique,” Rivers told Summer.
Florida activists have been stymied by previous attempts to bring marijuana legalization to fruition on the front line, most recently when the initiative was blocked by the state Supreme Court in 2021.
“All initiatives have provided some degree of learning,” Rivers said last year. “In this initiative, the authors have taken a stern look at the Supreme Court rulings over previous efforts and have taken them into consideration. increase.”
With a growing population and the third largest in the country, Florida is a coveted potential market for cannabis investors.
“Florida is definitely an interesting market, especially compared to other more mature and more saturated markets,” said Jade Green, president of Next Titan Capital, a cannabis industry consulting firm. The reason is that no matter what happens in 2024, we all share the same belief that adult (recreational) cannabis will eventually come to Florida.”
“If we can succeed in Florida until Rec (recreational marijuana) becomes widespread, we have a huge advantage in becoming one of the largest cannabis economies not only in the United States, but in the world,” Green added.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, widely considered the 2024 Republican presidential candidate, has spoken negatively about legalizing marijuana in the past.
“What I don’t like is that when you go to these places where it’s been done, it smells bad when you’re there, it smells so rotten.” DeSantis said last year.