Medical Marijuana

Opioid Lawsuit

The state of Florida is going after major opioid manufacturers and distributors.

Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi on Tuesday at a recovery center in Tampa announced the state is seeking to recover all damages allowable. She predicted a likely settlement in the billions.

Bondi said 15 people die every day in Florida from opioid abuse. More than 10,000 Floridians have died from what Bondi calls the state’s “opioid crisis.”

Medical Marijuana

AP

Thursday on First Coast Connect in the wake of the mass school shooting in Parkland we spoke with WLRN Miami Reporter Caitie Siwalski who was on the scene and Chad McIntyre, manager of TraumaOne Flight Services at UF Health Jacksonville Medical Center (01:03).       

We heard an update on the Medical Marijuana dispensary business in Jacksonville with Daniel Locke from Compassionate Alternative Care (30:14).

Jacksonville Business Journal Editor Timothy Gibbons told us about a story this week looking at the rise of craft breweries in Jacksonville (38:03).   

On the heels of a $2 million Bansky work of art on display at the downtown Main Library we spoke the Executive Producer of the film Saving Bansky (46:00).  


Laurie Avocado / WIkimedia Commons

After hearing a litany of complaints from lawmakers, state health officials are moving forward with a contested contract to process medical-marijuana patient identification cards.

Neeta Lind / Flickr

The Jacksonville Beach City Council has taken a step toward banning medical marijuana dispensaries from setting up shop in the beachfront city.

Florida Senate Proposal Would Allow Smoking Medical Marijuana

Nov 2, 2017
Wikimedia Commons

Amid a legal battle about the issue, a Senate Democrat on Thursday filed a proposal that would undo a ban on patients smoking medical marijuana.

noexcusesradio / Pixabay

A medical marijuana operator is demanding that the Florida Department of Health develop a regulation so vendors can begin processing and selling edible marijuana products to patients.

Laurie Avocado / WIkimedia Commons

Seemingly learning from past mistakes, state health officials have issued an emergency rule outlining the application process for new medical-marijuana vendors seeking to receive licenses in two weeks.

greenhouses and plants
Loop's Nursery

A longtime Jacksonville nursery has received approval for a coveted medical-marijuana license, as state health officials continue carrying out a new law that resolved key issues about the rapidly emerging cannabis industry.

Morgan and Morgan via YouTube

Saying Floridians knew what they were voting on in November, Orlando trial lawyer John Morgan this month followed through on threats to sue the state over a smoking ban included in a new law carrying out a constitutional amendment that broadly legalized medical marijuana.

exterior of dispensary
Nikeya Heath

Jacksonville’s first medical marijuana dispensary opened its doors to patients Wednesday at 6529 Beach Blvd. on the Southside.

  Today on “First Coast Connect,” we discussed the opening of Jacksonville’s first medical cannabis dispensary with Trulieve spokeswoman Victoria Walker (01:09). Terrell Hogan attorneys Matt Sowell and Fadi Chakour (23:47)  joined us to discuss Medical Malpractice Awareness Month. IKEA spokesman Joseph Roth (35:04) told us how the store opening in Jacksonville this year will use environmentally friendly building techniques, including the installation of solar panels. Finally, recently retired Jacksonville Public Library Director Barbara Gubbin (41:30) talked about her career and future plans. 


  Today on “First Coast Connect,” it was our weekly Media Roundtable with blogger Fred Matthews, Jacksonville Business Journal editor Timothy Gibbons and WJCT reporter Ryan Benk (01:07). 


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On this episode of Redux, we’re going to revisit a continuing conversation in Jacksonville: to dredge or not. The debate over deepening the St. Johns River continues.

Then, what do Montreal and Jacksonville have in common? Well, they are both port cities and if this whole shipping thing doesn’t work out, maybe we can learn a thing or two from our neighbors to the north.

Also on this episode, now that Florida has legalized some forms of medical marijuana, its list of potential uses might begin to grow. And finally, looking for things to do on the First Coast? We've got you covered with the new app from Visit Jacksonville, intoGo.


  Monday on “First Coast Connect,” attorney John Phillips (1:03) talked about what’s next in the case of former Congresswoman Corrine Brown (D-FL5). We spoke with David Feuerstein (23:10) from the New York-based Feuerstein Kulick law firm on why medical marijuana legislation is so slow moving in Florida. Health Designs founder and CEO Ann Sabbag (40:50) talked about the future of workplace wellness, and WJCT sports analyst Cole Pepper (44:45) discussed a historic PLAYERS Championship. 


Dank Depot / Flickr Creative Commons

At least six competing plans ranging from the most restrictive to the most permissive expansions of medical marijuana in Florida are working their way through the state Legislature. And the division is wearing down the patience of state residents, who overwhelmingly supported the measure.


hand lighting marijuana joint
Chuck Grimmett via Flickr

St. Johns County officials want to hear what residents think about potential medical marijuana regulations.

Time is of the essence to pass local rules, with several marijuana bills up for consideration in Tallahassee this legislative session.

marijuana plants
eggrole / Flickr

The Florida Department of Health held its first workshop Monday in Jacksonville to discuss proposed medical marijuana rules after voters approved Amendment 2 last year.

The hearing at the county health department was the first of five this week regarding the rules in Florida.

Ryan Benk / WJCT News

A Central Florida marijuana dispensary made its first delivery to a Jacksonville patient Tuesday — the same day a constitutional amendment goes into effect that will make more types of medical cannabis available to Floridians.

Knox Medical is one of a handful of Florida dispensaries that have been allowed to open under a 2014 law.

Bonnie Zerr / WJCT News

Welcome to Redux, a weekly newsmagazine from WJCT and the news podcast of the First Coast.

This week, we conclude our coverage of the 2016 elections. We look at what went wrong with the polls in predicting a president; Florida legalizes medical marijuana; and our listeners share their Election Day anxiety.


Florida Senate

Florida voters on Tuesday overwhelmingly approved an amendment to the state’s constitution expanding the availability of medical marijuana.

That’s two years after lawmakers passed the state’s first medical cannabis law.


A lively discussion about the medical marijuana amendment, Amendment 2, was featured on First Coast Connect. We were joined by Susan Pitman of Drug Free Duval. Host Melissa Ross also spoke by phone with author Sady Doyle about her book “Trainwreck,” which takes a look at the sometimes unusual behavior of female celebrities and what it says about our society’s views on women. We also spoke to National MS Society North Florida Chapter President Corrina Madrid and cyclist and multiple sclerosis victim Ellen Kallaher about this Saturday’s MS: PGA Tour Cycle to the Shore bicycling fundraiser at TPC Sawgrass.    


12-year-old Christina Clark takes medical marijuana.

Her mother Anneliese Clark uses it to treat the seizures her daughter has had since she was three months old. At her worst, “she just literally, she wasn’t doing anything,” Anneliese Clark said. “She laid on the couch and shook and twitched.”

Clark remembers Christina locked in a fetal position, unable to hold her head up, swallow her own spit, or control her bodily functions. After trying 17 different pharmaceutical drugs, Anneliese turned to medical marijuana.

Medical Marijuana

Nearly two years after Florida lawmakers legalized it, low-THC medical marijuana could be available in the state as soon as next week.

The Florida Department of Health has granted a Tallahassee company called Trulieve the authority to process and dispense the drug.

Five other Florida companies have a license to sell cannabis for medical use.

Meanwhile, activists in Florida push for a constitutional amendment legalizing the drug for a wider array of medical treatments.

greenhouses and plants
Loop's Nursery

More than two years after lawmakers legalized a limited type of medical marijuana, an administrative law judge heard arguments Wednesday in a dispute about whether a Northeast Florida nursery should receive one of the highly sought-after licenses to grow, process and distribute the non-euphoric pot.

Climate Change and Sea Level Rise

Florida is seen as the state most vulnerable to flooding from the impacts of sea level rise attributed to climate change.

Since 2004, retired UNF professor Allen Tilley has run a listserve that curates reports about climate change and the impacts of rising oceans.

And he says, particularly here in North Florida, government leaders aren’t doing enough long-term planning to prepare.

Allen Tilley joins us with his thoughts.

marijuana plants
eggrole / Flickr

TALLAHASSEE — Medical marijuana licenses given to two Northeast Florida nurseries by state health officials cannot be challenged by a grower who lost out in the application process, an administrative law judge ruled Monday.

But Judge R. Bruce McKibben left open the possibility for Loop's Nursery and Greenhouses to get a third license in the region.

marijuana plants
eggrole / Flickr

TALLAHASSEE — State health officials on Monday paved the way for Gainesville-based San Felasco Nurseries to join five other dispensing organizations authorized to grow medical marijuana in Florida.

San Felasco's approval came after an administrative law judge ruled in February that health officials wrongly rejected the nursery's application last year because of a decade-old drug crime.

hand lighting marijuana joint
Chuck Grimmett via Flickr

Florida voters could potentially decide on  five proposed constitutional amendments this year.

Three of them will appear on the November ballot, and two others are awaiting approval from the governor and Florida Supreme Court.


We discuss the week's biggest news stories with our roundtable of local journalists: Paula Horvath, Florida Times-Union columnist; Fred Matthews, Examiner blogger; A.G. Gancarski, Florida Politics writer; and WJCT analyst John Burr.

Topics include the CBS News investigation into the Wounded Warrior Project's spending, a new proposed constitutional amendment to legalize medical marijuana in the state, and more.


marijuana plant
Brett Levin / Flickr

In a key step for supporters of legalizing medical marijuana, the Florida Supreme Court on Thursday unanimously approved a proposed constitutional amendment that would go on the November 2016 ballot.

Justices said the proposal, spearheaded by the group People United for Medical Marijuana, meets legal tests that include dealing with a single subject and having a clearly worded ballot title and summary. The Supreme Court does not consider the merits of proposed constitutional amendments but reviews them, in part, to make sure voters would not be misled.

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