Social Equity Definition / Criteria
Florida does not offer a state social equity program to benefit medical cannabis licensees who have been disproportionately harmed by cannabis prohibition.
Social Equity Provisions
Florida does not have an informal social equity program that would fit MCBA standards. However, Florida currently has three provisions that arguably are aimed to provide for some type of cannabis industry equity. These provisions include:
(1) Reserving one of the ten licenses, that were supposed to be available in 2017, for a Black farmer who is a class member of Pigford v. Glickman. (The Pigford settlement addressed racial discrimination in farm lending during the 1980s and 1990s.) This theoretical license holder would be exempt from the requirement of having to be registered to do business in the state for the five consecutive years before submitting the licensing application. However, the cost associated with this license type is double that of a general applicant.
(2) Rrequiring applicants to have strong diversity plans. (notably, no further guidance is given within the regulations);
(3) Rrequiring applicants’ management, ownership, and employment to reflect an involvement of minorities and veterans. Applicant’s seeking to renew their license, which occurs biennially, must show the effectiveness of their diversity plan by reporting the following: representation of and recruitment efforts to employ minorities and veterans as well as a record of contracts for services with minority business and veteran businesses.
Fee Waivers and Reductions
- Fee Waivers / Reductions:
Florida does not offer fee waivers or reductions to support medical cannabis licensees who have been disproportionately harmed by cannabis prohibition.
Other Financial Support for Social Equity Applicants and Licensees
There are no resources derived from cannabis related revenue allocated specifically to improve the quality of life for communities impacted by the War on Drugs. Florida law mandates that $10 of every identification card fee (medical patient’s card) be allocated to FAMU’s Medical Marijuana Education and Research Initiative. The initiative has the purpose of educating minorities about marijuana for medical use and the impact of the unlawful use of marijuana on minority communities. However, these funds were withheld until late 2019.
License Priorities and Set Asides
Florida does not offer state-level licensing priority or set-asides to support medical cannabis licensees who have been disproportionately harmed by cannabis prohibition. Florida does reserve one license for a Black farmer who is a class member of the state’s Pigford v. Glickman settlement.