Wide variety of ailments covered under Florida's newly approved medical marijuana law

"Charlotte's Web' legal for more than epilepsy

TAMPA - It came to a surprise to some that our conservative, Republican led legislature approved medical marijuana before the voters could take up the issue November.

"Twenty other states are having this discussion as we speak and many of them have already adopted medical marijuana laws  so I think this is just a great first step for the State of Florida," said State Representative Jeff Brandes.

One reason conservatives could rally behind a drug that will still send you to prison in Florida is because of a little girl in Colorado.  Charlotte Figi's parents found their epileptic daughter's seizures were reduced with a certain strain of marijuana extract that is not smoked and has very little of the intoxicating THC.

Approving that for Florida's children was something even the Governor could support. Rick Scott has said he will sign the bill into law.
 
But late in the 2014 legislative session, the approved list of of ailments was expanded to include any disease suffered by anyone that causes seizures or muscle spasms plus cancer.

That worries people like Calvina Fay of the Drug Free America Foundation in St. Petersburg.

"It uses the term cancer and we're not sure what that is because people that have non malignant skin cancer, does that mean they're going to get to use it? It's just rather broad" said Fay.

When asked who would abuse a drug with no intoxicating affect, Ray says she believes there will be cheating.

"In order for the state to constantly monitor the actual amount of TCH verses CBD in the marijuana, they'd have to test all of it all the time and I just don't think that's practical."

The legislature's legalization of "Charlotte's Web' falls far short of what voters will decide on in November. 

If Proposition 2  passes with at least 60 percent of the vote, marijuana in any form will be legal for chronic pain, post traumatic stress disorder, insomnia or any debilitating  ailment  for which a doctor determines the benefits outweighs the risk. There's also no limit on the THC level of the marijuana.

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