Orlando International Airport bans medical marijuana despite legalization


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Orlando International Airport has decided to ban medical marijuana despite it being legal in the state of Florida.

WMFE 90.7 reports the airport is planning to install signs warning passengers that any cannabis, medical or recreational, could be confiscated at the airport. Last year, about 71 percent of Florida voters agreed with a constitutional amendment legalizing medical marijuana. The Greater Orlando Aviation Authority's decision means Orlando is the only major airport in Florida to have this policy – airports in Miami and Tampa don't prohibit medical marijuana. The airport determined the ban was appropriate because it receives federal money, and cannabis is illegal under federal law.

"The intent of the policy is to ensure that everyone is aware that under federal law, marijuana continues to be an illegal drug and anyone possessing it on airport property is subject to the applicable federal laws," airport spokeswoman Carolyn Fennell told WMFE. "Because the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority is not a law enforcement agency, we will rely on the Orlando Police Department and other federal agencies to take appropriate actions."

In Orlando, there's currently one medical marijuana dispensary. Last year, the city of Orlando decriminalized small amounts of marijuana by allowing police officers to give out citations instead of making arrests. WMFE reports that Orlando Police say they will "take no action" if Orlando International airport passengers lawfully have medical marijuana in their possession.

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