Florida bill would legalize recreational marijuana in state

Florida has already legalized medical marijuana, and now there's a push to legalize recreational use as well.

Florida House Bill 1117 would allow adults, ages 21 and over, to legally possess, use and transport up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana and grow up to six plants. It would be regulated similar to alcohol.

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Under the bill, it would still be illegal to smoke or ingest marijuana in a public place. Violators would be subject to a penalty of $100.

The bill would also allow licensed businesses to sell the drug, related products and accessories. There would be restrictions on how many establishments would be allowed in a certain area. Local governments could still prohibit businesses.

Licensed businesses under this bill would not be allowed to make sales between 1 a.m. and 6 a.m. or to anyone visibly intoxicated.

HB 1117 lays out noncriminal penalties for minors caught with marijuana. A first offense would include a penalty of at least $200 but less than $400. The penalties would increase with each subsequent offense.

The bill says it does not exempt anyone from laws prohibiting operating vehicles under the influence.

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