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Matt Gaetz has a special layer of hell for Charlotte’s Web challengers

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Florida’s Charlotte’s Web law is back before the judge who in November invalidated the previous rule for the growing of marijuana and the processing of oil from the plant.

Judge W. David Watkins will decide the challenge against the latest proposed regulations filed by the Medical Cannabis Trade Association of Florida. He has until April 23 to set a hearing date.

The MCTA is a Delaware LLC with a Fort Lauderdale attorney and a Tallahassee representative. It alleges the proposed rule is vague, “vests unbridled discretion in the agency” and enlarges provisions of the legislation lawmakers approved.

In court documents MCTA’s attorney states while the “implementing statute requires the Applicant to demonstrate the “technical and technological ability to cultivate and produce low THC cannabis, the proposed rule would require “Applicants to address the “technical and technological ability to cultivate, process and dispense low THC cannabis.”

No one seems to know anything about the MCTA other than what’s in the court documents filed in its challenge. An Internet search of newspapers, magazines, trade journals and press releases turned up no documents mentioning the company, not even one announcing its formation.

Maureen McCarthy Daughton, LLC of Tallahassee is listed as the MCTA representative for the challenge. Reached by phone Thursday she said she filed the petition on MCTA’s behalf and would have a representative call with more information about the association.

State Rep. Matt Gaetz sponsored the Compassionate Medicinal Cannabis Act of 2014. One would think a trade association would reach out to one of the Legislature’s leaders in the effort to authorize the use of cannabis as medicine. Here’s what he said when asked if he had ever heard of the Medical Cannabis Trade Association of Florida.

“I think a lot of these associations that have recently appeared are snake oil salesmen,” said Gaetz Thursday. “I think this is an instance of a challenge by people who simply want to get their names in the newspaper and there’s a special layer in hell for the people who are filing challenges just to enhance their own profitability at the expense of vulnerable children.”

We’ll have more when we hear back from the MCTA.

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