Florida House Representative Says He Will File Marijuana Legalization Bill Next Year

Florida House Representative Carlos G Smith (D) said he will file a marijuana legalization bill again next year – for a fourth consecutive year.

As quoted from Rep. Smith’s twitter post:

“Decriminalizing cannabis in the US is [would be] a HUGE deal… We are moving in the right direction even though it might be painfully slow.”

As described in a tweet July 22, 2021, Florida State Capitol Reporter Forrest Saunders showed his faith in Rep. Smith:

“Rep. @CarlosGSmith remains committed. For a 4th consecutive year, he’ll offer an adult legalization bill in 2022”

On his website www.CarlosGuillermoSmith.com, Carlos explains his views regarding cannabis in Florida. His opinion is that prohibition never works and that the incarceration of generations of Black and Brown people has cost taxpayers billions. He supports full legalization of marijuana for adult use.

Citing the fact that Florida overwhelmingly passed Amendment 2 in 2016, Smith believes many things that advocates and patients can get behind. Firstly, Rep. Smith says that (and it’s impossible to disagree with) Florida is being manipulated by “vertical integration”, a skewed system that rewards the powerful and completely shuts out the little guy. His suggestion that Florida moves towards a free-market industry would allow small and minority-owned businesses to compete with (or in) the cartel-like system that is currently in place. The high price of out-of-pocket costs to maintain legal patient status in Florida is another issue that Smith has fought against, and his work has resulted in lowered or waived patient ID fees. Carlos has championed medical marijuana as an alternative to opiates and opposes THC caps on dispensary products. Carlos also helped repeal the ban on smoking medical cannabis in 2019.

Rep. Smith believes that among many other things, locking up 40,000 Floridians a year for smoking cannabis is not a good use of law enforcement resources:

“There’s no question that our criminal justice system is broken and in need of serious reforms. Florida’s antiquated marijuana possession laws are not only costing us money, but they are ruining lives and unnecessarily filling up our state prison system. Legalize weed. Regulate it. Tax it. Spend it on schools. Pretty simple.”

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