A medical marijuana implementation plan has narrowly failed in the 2017 Regular Session of the Florida Legislature. Republican leaders in both the House and Senate negotiated for months on various issues, but in the end with only three hours left in the session, negotiators called it quits.
The House sent the Senate a final tweak in the bill in which bill sponsor Rep. Ray Rodrigues, R-Estero, made clear it was time to take it or leave it, and leave it, the Senate did.
The House approval with less than three hours left in the session, was 99-16. The Senate adjourned without a vote, thus killing the bill.
The bill failed over the number of dispensaries and storefronts allowed as well as sales taxes on products offered.
Development of rules and regulations to the medical use of marijuana, approved by 71% of the voters in the state, will now fall to the Florida Department of Health, which has until July to finalize plans.
The Department of Health Office of Compassionate Use has posted that "It is the responsibility of the qualified ordering physician to follow Florida constitution and statute" leaving healthcare providers with questions and qualified patients with limited options come July 3.