Cannabis cultivation for recreational use is illegal in Broward County. This is because Florida, Broward County's home state, classifies marijuana as a Schedule I controlled substance. Marijuana’s high potential for abuse is noted in Section 893.03 of the Florida Statutes. However, the cultivation of cannabis plants for medical use is legal in Broward County. Florida legalized medical marijuana in 2016 through the Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act of 2014, contained in Section 381.986 of the Florida Statutes.
Per Section 381.986(8) of the Florida Statutes, licensed medical marijuana treatment centers can grow marijuana plants and dispense cannabis products, containing a maximum of 0.8% of tetrahydrocannabinol (low-THC products), to registered medical marijuana patients and caregivers. Nevertheless, medical marijuana treatment centers cannot establish their cultivation facilities within 500 feet of elementary, middle, or high schools in Broward County.
The Compassionate Medical Marijuana Act does not specify whether marijuana plants must be grown indoors or outdoors. However, medical marijuana patients and caregivers in Broward County are prohibited from cultivating cannabis plants at home. Per Section 381.986(11)(b)(2) of the Florida Statutes, municipalities and counties may establish ordinances for determining the locations of medical marijuana treatment centers within their borders and regulating their operations. The Florida Department of Health regulates all medical marijuana activities in the state through the Office of Medical Marijuana Use (OMMU).
Cannabis manufacturing for medical use is legal in Broward County. Per Section 381.986 of the Florida Statutes, licensed medical marijuana treatment centers may process cannabis plants and manufacture low-THC cannabis products for dispensing to registered medical marijuana patients. However, different cities in Broward County may have ordinances regulating cannabis production activities within their borders.
Cannabis retail operations are legal in Broward County. According to Section 381.986 of the Florida Statutes, licensed medical marijuana treatment centers may dispense low-THC cannabis products, including edibles, resins, salts, and mixtures, to registered medical marijuana patients and caregivers. Per Article IV, Section 39.30 of the Broward County Code, a medical marijuana treatment center may establish a dispensing facility within 500 feet of a school. However, the Board of Broward County Commissioners must hold a public hearing to determine whether the facility's location will not be detrimental to public health and safety.
The provisions of Section 381.986(8) of the Florida Statutes allow licensed medical marijuana treatment centers to deliver low-THC cannabis products to registered medical marijuana patients and caregivers. However, it is illegal to deliver marijuana products for recreational use in Broward County.
Medical Marijuana Use Registry identification cards (MMUR ID cards) allow medical marijuana patients in Broward County to obtain cannabis from licensed medical marijuana treatment centers legally. The Office of Medical Marijuana Use (OMMU) under the Florida Department of Health issues MMUR ID cards to qualifying patients. A medical marijuana patient must be a resident of Florida and must be diagnosed with any of the following medical conditions by a qualified physician:
If a qualified physician recommends medical marijuana treatment for a patient, they may enroll the patient in the Medical Marijuana Use Registry (MMUR). The OMMU advises patients to provide their current email addresses to their physicians in order to receive emails containing their MMUR login details. After obtaining their MMUR login details, medical marijuana patients in Broward County may then apply for their medical cannabis ID cards.
A medical marijuana patient in Broward County may apply for a medical cannabis ID card online or by mail. To apply online, an applicant should log in to the Florida Medical Marijuana Use Registry portal. They will need to provide the required documentation (government-issued photo identification and proof of residency in Florida), complete an online application form, and pay a $75 processing fee. The OMMU provides detailed instructions for online MMUR identification card applications.
To apply for a medical marijuana identification card in Broward County by mail, an applicant must download and complete the MMUR ID card patient application form. Afterward, they must attach the required documentation and proof of processing fee payment to the form and mail them to the OMMU at:
Office of Medical Marijuana Use
PO Box 31313
Tampa, FL 33631-3313
Medical marijuana patients in Broward County can check the status of their MMUR identification card applications by calling 1(800) 9580-808 or sending emails to MedicalmarijuanaUse@flhealth.gov.
According to medical marijuana prescription reports released by the Office of Medical Marijuana Use (OMMU), the amount of cannabis dispensed by medical marijuana treatment centers in Florida doubled between 2019 and 2022. The reports also showed that the number of medical marijuana dispensaries in Florida tripled between 2019 and April 2022, creating more jobs for the state's residents. The OMMU's report does not specify the amount of revenue generated from marijuana in Florida. However, a 2019 Florida financial impact estimating conference report valued the state's legal recreational marijuana sales between 2021 and 2022 at approximately $2.1 billion. Some of this revenue accrue to local governments including Broward County.
The Uniform Crime Report (UCR) arrest data published by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) reveals that there were 1,930 Driving Under the Influence (DUI) arrests in Broward County in 2015, the year preceding medical marijuana legalization. This number reduced to 1,720 arrests in 2016 and decreased further to 1,494 arrests in 2017. In 2018 Broward County's DUI arrest figures increased to 2,151 before declining slightly to 2,063 arrests in 2019. These data indicate that medical marijuana legalization did not have any significant impact on DUI crime rates.
Furthermore, arrest data submitted to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) by the Broward County Sheriff's Office reveal that there were no arrests for marijuana-related offenses between 2017 and 2020 in the county. Marijuana-related arrest figures before cannabis legalization in Broward County are not provided in the FBI arrest report. Nevertheless, medical cannabis legalization did not significantly impact cannabis-related crime rates between 2017 and 2020 in Broward County.