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Florida Court Extends Challenge Time for Recreational Marijuana Initiative

Attorney General given more time to contest popular cannabis legalization proposal.





The Florida Supreme Court has granted a request from state Attorney General Ashley Moody for additional time to challenge a proposed ballot initiative aimed at legalizing recreational marijuana, reports Forbes.

The initiative, supported by over one million registered voters in Florida and put forth by Smart & Safe Florida, seeks to legalize cannabis for adults. It also plans to establish regulated sales of recreational marijuana at licensed dispensaries throughout the state.

Florida-based Trulieve funded the campaign, with expenses totaling $38.4 million to advance the measure, Global Cannabis Times reported in June.

Trulieve CEO Kim Rivers (a Global Cannabis Times 100 Most Influential in Cannabis winner) was optimistic the amendment will go forward. “We are thrilled the campaign has made this milestone and look forward to seeing this initiative on the ballot next November,” she said.

The proposed ballot initiative would allow existing medical marijuana providers, legalized in Florida in 2016, to sell cannabis to all adults aged 21 and above. Consumers would be allowed to purchase up to three ounces of marijuana at a time, including no more than five grams of cannabis concentrates.

The amendment also empowers state lawmakers to authorize additional adult-use cannabis business licenses, though this is not mandatory. The initiative would maintain Florida’s current vertically integrated business structure, where operators must control the entire production and marketing process of marijuana, from seed to sale.


In June, state elections officials confirmed that the initiative had gathered enough signatures to qualify for the 2024 general election ballot. With over a million Florida voters supporting the cause, the initiative has significant backing. However, before it can appear on the ballot, it must pass scrutiny from the Florida Supreme Court, which ensures the measure is focused on a single issue and is unlikely to confuse voters.

Attorney General Moody challenged the ballot measure, arguing that it should not be on the 2024 general election ballot, as it may mislead voters. Seeking more time to submit her arguments, Moody filed a motion with the Supreme Court for a seven-day extension, which the court granted, allowing her until August 2 to submit her case.

Smart & Safe Florida opposed the full seven-day extension but agreed to a two-day delay. Nonetheless, the court granted the attorney general’s request for the full extension, while cautioning that future requests for additional time might not be approved.

If approved by the Florida Supreme Court or not ruled upon by April 1, 2024, the marijuana legalization initiative will likely be included on the 2024 general election ballot. In Florida, constitutional amendments need 60% of the vote to pass. Since 2006, nine amendments, including a 2014 medical marijuana initiative, got majority support but failed because they didn’t reach the 60% threshold.



Cannaconvo with Peter Su of Green Check Verified

Cannabis Last Week with Jon Purow interviews Peter Su of Green Check Verified. Peter Su is a Senior Vice President with Green Check Verified, the top cannabis banking compliance software/consultancy in the space. A 20+ year veteran of the banking industry, Peter serves on the Banking & Financial Services committee of the National Cannabis Industry Association. He chairs the Banking and Financial Services Committee for the NYCCIA & HVCIA. He is an official member of the Rolling Stone Cannabis Culture Council. And, he is on the board of the Asian Cannabis Roundtable, serving as treasurer.

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