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Florida candidate for Attorney General says hemp is answer to state’s water problems

April 15, 2014

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Tomorrow, our cover story deals with the impending water crisis facing the state of Florida – despite the fact that Florida is surrounded by water and that our state is dotted with lakes and crisscrossed by streams and rivers, we’re facing a potentially devastating water shortfall due to overuse of groundwater from the Floridan Aquifer. And, although the state Senate has pushed around a few bills this legislative session to address some of the state’s water quality and quantity problems, the House has so far failed to act. Which means we could be waiting for an entire year before we address the fact that we are, quite literally, running out of fresh drinking water.

While the Legislature stalls, a new candidate for Attorney General, Libertarian Bill Wohlsifer, says he has a plan to fund water conservation and infrastructure: legalize the production of hemp in the state.

“One of my first acts in office will be to deschedule industrial hemp,” he said in an email sent today.

His campaign manager, W. Steven Edmonds, Jr. (a UCF grad, by the way) says that the tax sales from the emerging industry that would develop if hemp could be grown legally would help pay to fix the water infrastructure in the state. “It’s a win for agriculture,” he writes. “It’s a win for citizens. It’s a win for water resources and the environment. Hemp is a natural remedy for our water woes.”

A site has been launched to promote the effort, and Wohlsifer plans to make that – as well as the legalization of medical marijuana – one of his key campaign platorms.



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  • Tom Baxter

    “One of my first acts in office will be to deschedule industrial hemp,” It’s hard to believe that a member of the Florida Bar, which is a requirement to be AG doesn’t know that hemp is criminalized by the legislature, not under rules adopted by the AG.

  • W Steven Edmonds Jr

    Florida statute section 893.035 Control
    of new substances; findings of fact; delegation of authority to Attorney General
    to control substances by rule.—

  • Tom Baxter

    Thanks. But what does the ability of the AG to list a new have to do with a drug that’s criminal by statute and has been for decades?

  • Drew Bright

    Hemp improves the soil its planted in and grows the most delicious and nutritious seed on the Planet!

  • W Steven Edmonds Jr

    It also gives the AG the ability to remove. Industrial hemp is incorrectly scheduled which gives the criminal statute its authority. The AG has the ability to take any substance on or off the list. Bill would deschedule industrial hemp which has less than .5% THC (the drug part – its impossible to “get high” off of). Its an industrial plant with no narcotic value. The only reasons it was made criminal decades ago were for special interest manipulation using questionable tactics and propaganda to do so.

  • Jo Ann Vacirino

    Hemp4Water! This is so huge for Florida farmers and clean water advocates. The demand for industrial hemp raw products is on the rise and Florida farmers should get positioned to become the biggest domestic producers. As the Feds are backing off marijuana, it’s practically a given that industrial hemp is not even on their radar anymore. LET’S GROW HEMP, FL!