FLORIDA: Fittingly, the only Green Party candidate for state House District 6 owns a landscape irrigation business.
But while Henry Lawrence, of Panama City, earns his living making sure thirsty plants get enough to drink, his passion lies with supporting renewable energy and legalizing marijuana, for medical and recreational use.
He’s one of several vying to replace term-limited state Rep. Jimmy Patronis, R-Panama City, whose district covers most of Bay County.
Lawrence, 62, gets worked up when talking about marijuana policy, saying the state should offer a full-scale legalization like Colorado did last year.
“It could be a serious revenue generator for the state of Florida,” he said.
Lawrence said the extra tax revenue could go toward education, similar to Colorado where 15 percent of a new 25 percent marijuana sales tax goes toward public schools.
Meanwhile decriminalizing pot would cut down on the prison population and save taxpayers money, he said.
Lawrence also is concerned about growth — and how to manage it while protecting natural resources and government jobs — in the county. He believes the local military bases — Tyndall Air Force Base and Naval Support Activity Panama City — will be cut in the future, so those jobs will need to be replaced in the area.