With more dispensaries and more options for actually consuming cannabis, the plan approved by a Senate panel Monday could be more in line with Florida’s medical marijuana constitutional amendment than the far more restrictive House plan.

The bill sponsor, state Sen. Rob Bradley, R-Fleming Island, said his bill “fully implements the will of the voters and does so without playing games or being cute.”

But getting the House and Senate to come together and agree on a single version will be difficult. Even getting the Senate to a single version wasn’t easy.

Five senators filed bills to regulate Florida’s medical marijuana industry, but Bradley’s bill, approved unanimously by the Senate Health Policy Committee, incorporated many ideas from the other bills in a flurry of amendments.

“He kind of met in the middle … on the number of licenses, and I’m really glad he put in the robust and independent lab testing from [state Sen. Frank] Artiles’ bill,” said Ben Pollara, the campaign manager of the group behind the medical marijuana constitutional amendment and one of the amendment’s co-authors.

Along with Artiles’ requirement for independent testing of marijuana, the Bradley bill also now creates a new medical marijuana research group at the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa.



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