matt gaetz

U.S.: Federal Bill Seeking To Reschedule Marijuana To Schedule III Gains Prominent Co-Sponsor

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Rescheduling cannabis to Schedule III in the Controlled Substances Act would uphold states rights, allow for cannabis banking and create a path for research, says bill's sponsors

By Michael Bachara
Hemp News

On April 6, Florida Congressman Matt Gaetz (R) and Congressman Darren Soto (D) joined forces in a bipartisan effort to make it easier for ill-patients and scientific and medical researchers to obtain marijuana by introducing H.R. 2020, a federal bill rescheduling marijuana to Schedule III of the Controlled Substances Act. On May 24, California Representative Dana Rohrabacher (R), a member of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus, joined on to co-sponsor the bill.

U.S.: New Federal Bill Would Reschedule Marijuana As Schedule III

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

A new bill introduced to Congress would reschedule marijuana as a Schedule III substance, a classification it would share with Tylenol and codeine.

Two Florida congressmen, Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz and Democratic Rep. Darren Soto, introduced legislation Thursday that would transfer marijuana from its current standing as a Schedule I substance, the strictest of the classifications, to Schedule III of the Controlled Substances Act.

In an interview with The Cannabist, Gaets said that having marijuana on a lower rung would uphold the rights of states that have legalized the medical use of cannabis, allow for banking activities and create a clearer path for research,

“I have supported cannabis reform as a state legislator, and I want to see the people that I fought for in my state have access to a legal, high-quality product that’s been well-researched,” Gaetz said.

If it passes, the yet-to-be-named House Bill 2020 would not affect recreational cannabis businesses in operation.

Florida: House Passes Medical Marijuana Bill

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

A bill that expands the use of medical marijuana was passed by the Florida House today, March 3.

Rep. Matt Gaetz's bill) HB307 was approved in a 99-16 vote and will add regulations to a bill from two years ago, reports WESH-TV. The vote expands the Right to Try Act, allowing near death patients to use non-smokable forms of cannabis. It also established regulations for dispensaries, patients and physicians covered by the 2014 Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act.

Marijuana products authorized by the bill will be high in cannabidiol (CBD) but low in tetrahydrocannibinol (THC), the ingredient that causes a high.

A similar bill is soon to be voted on by the Florida Senate.

Florida: Judge Clears Way For Non-Euphoric Medical Marijuana

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Florida regulators said they expect to provide access to a strain of non-euphoric marijuana for medical purposes by the end of this year after a Tallahassee judge last week dismissed the final challenge to the long-awaited rule.

The Florida Department of Health is expected to start accepting applications within three weeks from eligible growers within three weeks for the strain of cannabis that is low in THC, the main "high"-inducing component, and high in cannabidiol (CBD), which, like THC, also has medicinal effects, reports Mary Ellen Klas at the Miami Herald.

Growers could start selling to eligible patients who are put on a state-run "compassionate use registry" within months.

"I am one happy legislator," said Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Shalimar), one of the sponsors of the 2014 bill designed to allow the development and cultivation of the "Charlotte's Web" strain of low-THC cannabis to help patients suffering from epileptic seizures and other ailments. (The clueless legislators passed the law naming a specific strain of low-CBD marijuana, evidently unaware that there are lots of low-CBD medicinal strains, but in the process making the Stanley Brothers -- who control the supply of Charlotte's Web -- very happy.)

Florida: Gov. Rick Scott Signs CBD-Only Medical Marijuana Bill Into Law

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Florida Governor Rick Scott on Monday signed into law a bill allowing the limited use of Charlotte's Web, a specialized strain of marijuana with high cannabidiol (CBD) and almost no tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). The "Charlottes Web" strain, which is used to quell seizures, is non-psychoactive and is named for a Colorado girl whose seizures have been lessened by the strain.

Florida legislators passed the measure earlier this spring with bipartisan support after emotional appeals from parents seeking Charlotte's Web for their kids, reports Bill Cotterell at Reuters.

The reason they asked for, and got a law specifying, the Charlotte's Web strain isn't because it's the only high-CBD strain of cannabis; there are in fact several others. The reason is because Charlotte's Web is the only high-CBD strain mentioned in Dr. Sanjay Gupta's Weed 2 documentary, so that's the only one the Florida of which the parents and legislators in Florida were aware.

Of course, the Stanley brothers in Colorado are more than happy to have laws written in other states that specifies their particular strain, since they stand to make millions of dollars from it.

Florida: CBD-Only Cannabis Oil Bill Approved By House Judiciary Committee

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

The Florida House Judiciary Committee on Monday approved a plan to allow doctors to authorize patients to use a non-psychoactive marijuana extract which provides relief from seizures and pain.

HB 843, sponsored by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Shalimar), passed on a 15-3 vote over some determined opposition, reports Health News Florida. Florida Surgeon General John Armstrong opposed the bill, and warned the committee that it is "unwise" for the Legislature to allow untested drugs to market rather than going through the lengthy process of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval.

"We must be wary of unintended consequences and remember that first we must do no harm," said Armstrong, who also heads the Florida Department of Health. Anecdotal reports have indicated that cannabidiol (CBD) oil is quite effective in quelling seizures, and parents like it because it doesn't get their children high, as would THC, the other major medicinal cannabinoid in marijuana.

The bill would set up four regional organizations around Florida that could grow, test and dispense CBD oil. It wouldn't have enough THC in it to get you high, but would be rich in CBD, which appears to have anti-seizure effects.

Florida: House Committee Approves CBD-Only Medical Marijuana Proposal

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

A key committee in the Florida House voted overwhelmingly on Wednesday to approve medical use of a non-psychoactive marijuana extract that has shown promise jn treating seizures.

"We have evidence of benefits," said Republican Rep. Cary Pigman, who is also an emergency room physician, reports Bill Cotterell at Reuters. "We have no evidence of harm."

The Florida House Criminal Justice Committee approved the proposal, which would allow medical use of cannabidiol (CBD), on an 11-1 vote. Before the vote, Rep. Pigman referred to parents in the audience who had told of their children having epileptic seizures that destroy brain cells.

Families told the House committee that a high-CBD strain of marijuana bred in Colorado l

The CBD-only bill isn't related to a constitutional amendment put on November's ballot in Florida by a public petition campaign, People United For Medical Marijuana. That measure would allow doctors to authorize medical marijuana for patients with serious illnesses.

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