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Florida: Daytona Beach Decriminalizes Marijuana

Florida marijuana.jpg

By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

The city of Daytona Beach voted on Wednesday night to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana.

The ordinance will allow police officers to issue tickets to offenders found with less than 20 grams of marijuana, instead of arresting them and taking them to jail.

The ordinance was approved unanimously by the city council and it goes into effect immediately.

The exact cost of tickets has not been announced.

The city of Orlando passed a similar ordinance in April to make possession of 20 grams of pot or less a violation of city code.

Penalties for simple possession in Orlando range from $50 to a mandated court hearing, depending on how many times a person has been ticketed.

Florida: Orlando Leaders Change Marijuana Decriminalization Ordinance

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Orlando leaders made changes Monday to their recent marijuana decriminalization ordinance, making possession of 20 grams of pot or less a city code violation instead of a misdemeanor.

The ordinance was originally written so that a first violation would mean a $50 fine. The fine was changed to $100 and $200 for first and second offenders, but it would also give them the option to waive the fines if they take a substance abuse education program instead.

Currently, possession of 20 grams of pot is a criminal misdemeanor carrying a punishment of up to a year in jail and a fine up to $1,000.

“It would help a lot of lower and middle-income families out here have a second chance. We keep seeing the same things over and over again, and it’s not working, so we need to make a change with the policy,” said Korey Wheeler of Organize Now.

Supporters for the change said the punishment should fit the crime.

"This will give our officers an option so that that person's life won't be ruined by a criminal record," said Chief John Mina of the Orlando Police Department.

The effective date for the ordinance has been set for October 1.

U.S.: The Marijuana Show Returns For Season 3; $20 Million Available To Ganjapreneurs


Season Three breaks records with $20 million available to ganjapreneurs in capital investment

The cannabis industry is anticipated to grow to $17.5 billion by the year 2020, and the first-ever reality show about investing in cannabis is looking for the next crop of ganjapreneurs to join winners who have already offered over $18 million in investments, and brought a cannabis car, a major Hollywood “stoner comedy”, a cannabis advertising agency, and a line of CBD-infused dog bones to the market.

Emerging and established ganjapreneurs with new business ideas or budding companies are invited to audition for season three of the critically acclaimed TV series The Marijuana Show, dubbed the “Shark Tank for Ganjapreneurs,” for an opportunity to receive guidance and capital to take them to the next level. The newest season is breaking records, offering $20 million in investment capital, beating out network juggernaut “Shark Tank” and offering more investment money to a contestant than “Shark Tank” ever has.

This season celebrity American entrepreneur, author and CEO of Rush Communications Russell Simmons joins the roster as an advocate for the show. “A lot of people who are innovative and can figure out ways to build out brands, looks like that’s a market they should get in,” Simmons said.

Florida: Orlando Becomes Latest City To Decriminalize Marijuana

Florida weed.jpg

By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

On Monday the Orlando City Council voted to approve an ordinance that would effectively decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana.

The measure narrowly passed, with a vote of 4-3, making possession of 20 grams or less a violation of a city code with a $50 fine for first offenders.

Supporters, including dozens of residents, outnumbered opponents at the meeting on Monday.

One of the three council members voting no, Commissioner Samuel Ings said the measure would hurt Orlando's image as a family friendly tourist destination and represents a "slippery slope."

"We don't have to follow the trend that other cities have started just because it has become popular," said Ortiz, who argued not enough data is yet available to determine the impact of similar policies.

The four voting in favor were commissioners Regina Hill, Patty Sheehan, Robert Stuart and Mayor Buddy Dyer.

Orlando police chief John Mina and Mayor Dyer urged approval of the ordinance, similar to pot policies recently adopted in other municipalities, including Tampa and Volusia County.

Marijuana possession will remain a state crime. Mina said officers may still make arrests for even small amounts of marijuana, depending on circumstances including the offender's record.

Florida: Orlando Could Be Next City To Decriminalize Marijuana

Florida pot.jpg

By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Orlando city commissioners will vote on April 18 on a measure that would decriminalize the possession of 20 grams or less of marijuana.

Instead of making an arrest, police officers could issue fines beginning at $50, according to city of Orlando documents. Fines would increase for repeat offenders, and a possible court hearing would be mandated.

Marijuana would still be considered illegal, but the measure would lessen the criminal image that typically comes with marijuana.

This change in perception among Orlando leaders could help the passage of Amendment 2, the initiative on the November ballot that would legalize a wider use of medical marijuana in Florida.

Orlando attorney John Morgan, who has publicly and financially backed the Amendment 2 effort in Florida, voiced his approval of Orlando leaders considering the decriminalization of possessing marijuana, tweeting that Orlando could be the next city to decriminalize marijuana.

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