The Florida legislature holds its Regular Session for 60 days, every year.  In 2016, the legislature is meeting from January 12 to March 11.  Similar to last year, several medical marijuana bills are under consideration.   The main, medical marijuana-related bills (all of which are subject to extensive revision during the session and available for review and download at the links below) are as follows:

HB 63 – Revamps Florida’s current Low THC Medical Marijuana Law.  The proposed bill would remove the limit on the number of approved/licensed businesses (currently, only five) and expand the number of medical conditions that would qualify for use of Low THC cannabis (currently, only cancer patients and sufferers of seizures).  UPDATE:  This bill was withdrawn prior to introduction.

SB 460 (HB 307; companion bill) – Expands on a previously enacted law that allows terminally-ill patients to gain access to experimental drugs that have not been approved by the FDA.  The proposed bill would allow terminally-ill patients, upon doctor approval, to use medical marijuana in a non-smokeable form (and not limited to non-euphoric, Low THC cannabis).  The medical marijuana would be dispensed by the five businesses approved/licensed under Florida’s current Low THC Medical Marijuana Law.

SB 852 (HB 1183; companion bill but would not allow smokeable forms) – Would significantly expand the availability and types of medical marijuana for patients suffering from a myriad of medical conditions (ranging from conditions such as Parkinson’s and AIDS to “severe and persistent pain”).  The proposed bill establishes a production, processing and dispensing framework that would likely have been implemented under the constitutional amendment voted on in November 2014 (which failed to pass by a slim margin) and that will likely be implemented under the proposed constitutional amendment to be voted on in November 2016.   The framework favors a “free market approach,” in that the number of licensed/approved businesses that wish to dispense medical marijuana would only be limited in number based on population.  Businesses wishing to grow or process medical marijuana would not be limited.