Inside this issue:

  • For a 4/20 Friendly Florida Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorney advocates for marijuana legalization in South Florida
  • Playbook Takeover: Walter's Advice on Pushing Outside Your Comfort Zone Inspired by the Completion of his Very First Spartan Race
  • Our Delicious Maple Pecan Bread Recipe
  • Girls Trip Up - When a Shopping Spree Turns into a Shopping Flee
  • Plus, Our Firm has Gone Platinum! 

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Cover Story:

For a 4/20 Friendly Florida 

It’s 2018, and it’s time Florida legalized marijuana. In fact it’s well past time.

That’s why, in celebration of 4/20 (which also happens to be our Marketing Director Christina’s birthday) we wanted to share our thoughts on why it’s time for Florida to go forward, full weed ahead!

Setting aside the fun, creative and enjoyable pleasures this plant provides, legalizing the recreational use of marijuana also offers a lot of practical benefits that would benefit residents.

Of course the most obvious one is money. The cannabis industry is big business. Industry research firm BDS Analytics estimates that in 2018 consumers will spend a total of $3.1 billion on cannabis sales, with the market growing to $5.1 billion dollars in 2019 as more dispensaries get online. Oh - and these numbers only apply to California. Across the other seven states that have legalized the recreational use of marijuana (Colorado, Oregon, Hawaii, Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada and Washington) sales hit $9.7 billion in 2017 alone, and are predicted to increase to $24.5 billion by 2021. Time for Florida to get in the game!

Since legalizing marijuana in 2014, Colorado has collected over $500 million dollars in revenue from taxes and fees. Washington collected $319 million in taxes from marijuana in 2017 alone, and Nevada scored $30 million in tax revenues within the first six months of legalization. Considering Florida doesn’t have state income tax, this kind of revenue could go a long way towards improving our education system, restoring waterways, better infrastructure, disaster aid, etc.

Legalizing marijuana could also improve the efficiency of the criminal justice system.

Minor marijuana possession infractions clog up the system, and unnecessarily so. Smoking weed is so common in society it’s inevitable - just like those illegal March madness pools we discussed last month.

Courts and police officers are wasting time and resources going after individuals with small amounts of marijuana when they could be focusing on much more important crimes like human trafficking, for which, unfortunately, South Florida is a hot spot.

Studies even show that the legalization of marijuana is lessening the rate of violent crime in the US. The majority of illegal drugs enter the US through Mexico. It’s a six billion dollar per year illegal market. The illegal drug trade organizations (DTOs) are responsible for the majority of murders, robberies, and assaults.

But with the legalization of weed in states near the Mexican border, the demand for illegal weed has fallen, and with it the rate of violent crimes. Murders are down 10%, robberies are down 19%, and assaults are down 9%.

Remember that all of the numbers in this article - from the billion dollar market, to the decreased rates of violent crime are a reflection of only 8 states out of 50 having legalized the recreational use of marijuana.

Imagine how much better they would be with all 50 states behind them. And that’s why, in celebration of 4/20, we encourage Florida to help pave the way and be the 9th state to legalize it.