Article by The Associated Press via Leafly
A Florida nursery and a man who suffers from epilepsy filed a lawsuit Tuesday against Gov. Rick Scott’s administration that contends that state officials are flouting the state’s new medical marijuana law.
It’s the latest legal challenge against the way Florida officials and state legislators have acted since voters approved medical marijuana a year ago.
Bill’s Nursery, located in Miami-Dade County, and Michael Bowen want a judge to order the Department of Health to hand out new licenses for treatment centers that were promised in a law passed by the Legislature this past summer. Treatment centers are the only businesses allowed to grow, process and sell medical marijuana.
The state was supposed to hand out a total of 10 new licenses by October, but so far has only approved six. Officials have blamed the delay on a separate lawsuit challenging another provision of the new law.
Bowen said the department is blocking patients from getting access to medical marijuana.
“In cases like mine, medical marijuana is literally the only thing that can control my seizures and keep me alive,” Bowen said in a statement. “But the Florida Department of Health’s inexcusable foot-dragging is keeping patients like me from getting safe, reliable access to these lifesaving treatments.”
Mara Gambineri, a spokeswoman for the department, said that the state is working “diligently” to implement the new law.