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Florida Marijuana Laws – Florida Head Shop Owners File Lawsuit In Hillsborough To Ban The “Bong Bill”

In an effort to slow down the use of marijuana in Florida, lawmakers decided to pass a law that would make it more difficult for businesses to sell bongs and pipes that are commonly associated with smoking pot. With the new law is getting ready to go into effect on Thursday, owners of smoke shops or head shops as they are often called are fighting as 26 got together to file a lawsuit in Hillsborough County.

The law forbids stores from selling pipes or bongs that derive 25% or more of their revenue from the sale of devices used to smoke or don’t derive 75% of their annual revenue from tobacco products. The law defines the items that cannot be sold as bongs, water bongs, or any stone, glass, acrylic, plastic, metal, wooden or ceramic pipes.

The law was sponsored by Tampa Bay’s own Rep. Darryl Rouson, a Democrat from St. Petersburg. While the bill couldn’t be classified as a new marijuana law, Rouson was quoted in the St. Pete Times as saying that it is common knowledge that these bongs and pipes are used primarily for smoking pot and his goal is to break down that façade.

The business owners see the law very differently. They are arguing it is next to impossible to decide which shops meet the criteria laid out by the new law in such a short time. Their lawsuit claims the “Bong Bill” cannot be enforced because there is no method in place to determine how much revenue comes from which sales. According to the article on TampaBay.com, the business owners also claim they are being singled out and that the law criminalizes the small business owners.

It can also be argued whether or not the new law will do anything towards lowering the illegal use of marijuana in Tampa or any other Florida city.

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