We will continue operating as a Medical Marijuana Dispensary until the State begins issuing non medical licenses in January 2018.
The City of San Jose adopted an urgency ordinance that prohibits commercial sale of non-medical marijuana in the city. The ban currently includes commercial cultivating, processing, manufacturing, distributing, testing and selling of non-medical cannabis.
This was done to allow cities time to determine the rules under which recreational marijuana can be distributed or not within their township. We trust San Jose will leverage the network of compliant medical dispensaries for the distribution of non-medical cannabis.
Proposition 64 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
On November 8, 2016 California voters passed Proposition 64 which legalizes the non-medical use of cannabis starting January 1, 2018. Some quick facts about the initiative:
- The Bureau of Medical Cannabis Regulation is renamed the Bureau of Marijuana Control.
- Cities and counties maintain local control.
- Persons 21 and over may possess and grow specific amounts of cannabis. -
- Persons 21 and over may purchase nonmedical cannabis when licensing authorities have a framework in place. Licensing will begin in January of 2018. All taxes collected are placed in the Marijuana Tax Fund.
- There will be a State Sales Tax rate of 15% that will be effective January 2018.
- Effective November 9, 2016, certain sales of medical marijuana will be exempt from sales and use tax. The Board of Equalization will be publishing more information today. To be exempt from some sales taxes, the consumer will need to have a State of California Cannabis Card. More info is available on the State Cannabis Card Program.
1. The initiative calls for licenses by January 1, 2018. Is that possible? The agencies involved are taking appropriate action to meet the deadlines and requirements imposed by the initiative. The basic priorities under the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MCRSA) regarding public and environmental safety remain the same under the initiative.
2. Now that the initiative passed, does that mean any adult 21 and over can walk into a dispensary after November 9, 2016 and purchase cannabis? No. Dispensaries will still have to be licensed to sell nonmedical cannabis. The initiative calls for licensing authorities to begin accepting applications and issuing licenses in January 2018. The Bureau of Marijuana Control is responsible for licensing dispensaries under the initiative.
3. Will people be able to smoke nonmedical cannabis anywhere? No. The initiative prohibits consumption of cannabis in a public place unlicensed for such use, including near K-12 schools and other areas where children are present.
4. Can people expect to have their criminal records changed? The purpose and intent of this section of the initiative indicates that it seeks to “[a]uthorize courts to resentence persons who are currently serving a sentence for offenses for which the penalty is reduced by the act, so long as the person does not pose a risk to public safety, and to 2 redesignate or dismiss such offenses from the criminal records of persons who have completed their sentences as set forth in this act.” Health and Safety Code section 11361.8. (a) states that “[a] person currently serving a sentence for a conviction, whether by trial or by open or negotiated plea, who would not have been guilty of an offense, or who would have been guilty of a lesser offense under the Control, Regulate and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act had that act been in effect at the time of the offense may petition for a recall or dismissal of sentence before the trial court that entered the judgment of conviction in his or her case to request resentencing or dismissal in accordance with Business and Professions Code sections 11357, 11358, 11359, 11360, 11362.1, 11362.2, 11362.3, and 11362.4 as those sections have been amended or added by that act.”
5. What about the fact that California will be allowing and regulating something that is still illegal under federal law? The federal government issued the Cole memo in 2013 in response to several states legalizing the production and use of cannabis. The memo provides the federal government’s expectations for state and local governments enacting cannabis related laws.
6. How will the track and trace program work for nonmedical cannabis? The California Department of Food and Agriculture will establish the track and trace program for medical cannabis and nonmedical cannabis. Track and Trace will operate similar to the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MCRSA) requirements. This means the movement of cannabis and cannabis products will be documented throughout the supply chain from cultivation to sale and can detect illegal activity through this clear chain of custody. The system will ensure that if public safety concerns arise, the source can be quickly identified. Additionally, the Department of Food and Agriculture will incorporate investigation and enforcement as necessary.
7. Will the Medical Marijuana Card Program go away? Although Proposition 64 amends some statutory provisions governing the Medical Marijuana Identification Card (MMIC) program, it does not abolish it. The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) will continue to print identification cards and maintain a registry database for verification of qualified patients and their primary caregivers.
8. Who regulates edibles? (Not considered a food or a drug, per H&S code) The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) is responsible for regulating and licensing nonmedical cannabis manufacturers by 2018. This includes cannabis-infused edibles.
9. How will you keep nonmedical cannabis away from kids? The initiative includes provisions designed to help keep cannabis away from children, including but not limited to, marketing restrictions, school buffer zones, child-resistant packaging, and warning labels.
10. What steps will the licensing authorities take to implement Proposition 64? The licensing authorities are closely analyzing the initiative as passed to determine how best to regulate both medical and nonmedical use in an expeditious and efficient manner. Proposition 64 requires implementation through California’s regulatory process. The licensing authorities intend to take a similar approach with the initiative by involving stakeholders and the public in the regulatory process.
11. How will the regulations for non-medical use differ from medical cannabis ones? All related regulations will be based on the language of that initiative. At the same time, the basic priorities regarding public safety, safe products, and environmental safety remain the same.