California Cannabis Laws In Flux

California cannabis regulators (Bureau of Medical Cannabis Regulation, CalCannabis Cultivation Licensing, Office of Manufactured Cannabis Safety) have all been hard at work drafting regulations to implement the 2015 Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (“MCRSA”). The regulators released draft regulations in late April, which are available here:

The state regulators are currently accepting public comments on these draft regulations.

  • Manufacturing regulations: comments due by June 13. Click here.
  • Dispensary/distribution/transport regulations: comments due by June 13. Click here.
  • Cultivation regulations: comments due by June 14. Click here.
  • Testing regulations: comments due by June 20. Click here.

Cannabis businesses should be aware, however, that the state regulators will likely be required to withdraw (in other words, cancel) these draft regulations if Governor Brown signs the “Cannabis Trailer Bill” in June, as is expected.

Voters approved the legalization of recreational cannabis via Proposition 64, the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (“AUMA”) in November 2016. Though similar in many respects to MCRSA, AUMA’s regulatory program differs in some key areas. This year, Governor Brown requested that the Legislature approve legislative changes to both MCRSA and AUMA that would make the two laws more consistent in order to avoid duplicative licensing programs, confusion, and unnecessary costs. This new legislation is known as the “Cannabis Trailer Bill”, and is available for review here. If approved by the Legislature, Governor Brown would sign the changes into law on or before June 15, 2017.

As noted, if Governor Brown signs the Cannabis Trailer Bill, the state agencies would withdraw the current draft regulations, and begin drafting changes to those regulations to include provisions that would implement AUMA as well.

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