By Hunter Dublin | August 8, 2022
Black farmers in Florida are still waiting after nearly 6 years for the state to announce who will be receiving a license to grow medical marijuana. The process has been delayed by litigation, and the application fees have increased since the law was passed. Some lawmakers are concerned that the process is unfairly biased against black farmers.
Lawmakers are concerned about the delays in issuing licenses to black farmers and want answers from the state agency about the licensing timeline and why application fees have increased. They also want to know if more licenses should be given to black farmers.
The state agency says the licensing timeline is in phase two of a three-phase process, but lawmakers are not satisfied with the process. They say much of the delay has been because of litigation and that application fees have nearly tripled since the law took effect.
Some black farmers are hopeful they will be able to get a license, but others are concerned that the process is too narrowly focused and that only farmers who are part of a Pigford case should be eligible.
Lawmakers are continuing to pressure the state agency for answers and more transparency in the licensing process. They say that the delays and increased fees have unfairly disadvantaged black farmers.