According to Article X Section 29 of the Florida Constitution and Section 381.986 of the 2022 Florida Statutes, Flagler County only allows the medical use of marijuana. In line with this, the Department of Health Office of Medical Marijuana Use (OMMU) licenses Medical Marijuana Treatment Centers (MMTCs) to cultivate, process, and dispense medical marijuana. These centers may operate in areas at least 500 feet away from public and private schools. MMTCs who have proven they have the necessary infrastructure and technological ability to cultivate marijuana may only cultivate marijuana indoors. As of February 2023, Flagler County has at least two licensed MMTCs in Palm Coast City.
Appropriate measures must be followed when growing medical marijuana. All seeds and growing plants must be inspected for pests that may endanger the state's agricultural interests. Pesticides may be used upon consultation with the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Additionally, fumigation may be done to remove infested plants, as stated under Chapter 581.
Following state rules, MMTCs must be accountable for all raw materials, finished products, and byproducts produced during the cultivation, processing, and dispensing of medical marijuana. Diversion and unlawful access nor possession of these should be prevented by implementing adequate security and operational surveillance measures 24 hours daily.
MMTCs in Flagler County may process or manufacture medical marijuana away from other plants and products in areas within an enclosed and secured building. Only solvents and gases determined by the department to be safe for humans may be used when processing marijuana. Additionally, all processed marijuana products must be tested by Certified Marijuana Testing Laboratories to determine if they meet the department's potency, labeling, and safety requirements. State laws and regulations related to waste management must also be complied with.
An additional permit to operate as a food establishment is required for MMTCs producing edibles in accordance with Chapter 500. As stated in Section 381.986, edibles may only contain up to 200 milligrams of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in total, with each serving not exceeding 10 milligrams of THC. Potency variations in edibles are limited to 15% or less. All processed medical marijuana products must be packaged and labeled following the United States Poison Prevention Packaging Act of 1970.
Yes, licensed MMTCs in Flagler County are allowed to dispense medical marijuana and low-THC marijuana to qualified patients and caregivers in the county from 7:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Medical marijuana cardholders may be able to purchase flowers, edibles, vaporizers, concentrates, orals, and topicals with the following limits: a 70-day supply of marijuana in a given 70-day period, a 35-day supply of marijuana in a smoking form in 35 days, or a maximum of 2.5 ounces for a 35-day supply of marijuana intended for smoking.
Prior to dispensing, employees of MMTCs must utilize the Medical Marijuana Use Registry (MMUR) to verify the buyer’s identity. After which, details such as the date and time of purchase, amount and type of marijuana product dispensed, and name and registry ID number of the patient or caregiver must be recorded in the registry.
Following Section 381.986, MMTCs in Flagler County may deliver medical marijuana to qualified patients registered in the MMUR 24 hours a day. A transportation manifest generated from the MMTC’s seed-to-sale tracking system must always be kept inside the delivery vehicle. This should contain the delivery schedule, details of the MMTC and the delivery vehicle, delivery address, and details of the recipient. A copy of this manifest should also be provided to the recipient.
Only vehicles in good working condition may be used for delivery services. Marijuana and other products to be delivered must be stored in a locked compartment inside the vehicle during transport. To ensure safe delivery, at least two employees must deliver the products, and one must always remain inside the vehicle.
To become a medical marijuana card holder, Flagler County patients must be certified by qualified physicians to have at least one of the following qualifying medical conditions: cancer, chronic nonmalignant pain, glaucoma, epilepsy, HIV/AIDS, post-traumatic stress disorder, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, Crohn’s disease, multiple sclerosis, or any other terminal condition diagnosed by another physician.
Application may be completed online by submitting the applicant’s photo, proof of residency, signature, and payment to the Medical Marijuana Use Registry. For those who are not able to complete their application online, the applicant may accomplish the patient or caregiver application form and then mail it to:
Office of Medical Marijuana Use
PO Box 31313
Tampa, FL 33631-3313
The official medical marijuana card will be mailed to the applicant once approved. For inquiries, the department may be reached via 800-808-9580.
Florida saw a positive impact on its economy when it legalized the medical use of marijuana. As of February 2023, the state has recorded 792,153 qualified patients, 2,565 qualified physicians, and 537 dispensaries, 2 of which are located in Flagler County. In one week, it has sold 276,795,214 milligrams of THC, 2,925,386 milligrams of CBD, and 96,012.094 ounces of marijuana in smoking form. While no excise tax is imposed on medical marijuana sales, a 6% retail sales tax is collected from the buyer for every purchase.
Florida saw a decrease in crime rates related to marijuana when it legalized its medical use in 2016. Based on the available report on the FBI Crime Data Explorer, marijuana possession offenses in the state were reduced from 135 arrests in 2017 to 19 in 2021. Additionally, arrests for marijuana drug sale offenses were reduced from three in 2017 to one in 2021.