Here We Are! California Medical Cannabis Cultivation Licensing Regulations
By: Captain Sunshine
Hazzah California Medical Cannabis Proposal Regulations
Governor Jerry Brown of the Sunshine State of California releases the “California Medical Cannabis Cultivation Licensing Regulations,” as of Friday April 28th, 2017. Yay! We, the people have been waiting. The public has 45 days to comment on the draft proposals. Captain Sunshine writes this article in order to inform, educate, and hopefully encourage and create a dialogue on the draft.
The last day for us to submit public comment is Monday, June 12, 2017. Whatever ideas we may generate Captain Sunshine can submit on behalf of the readership.
The following is a link to the California Department of Food and Agriculture for direct access.
The following is a link to the Bureau of Medical Cannabis Regulation.
California Proposes Regulations for Medical Cannabis Cultivation Program
There are 58 pages to the Proposal Regulations for Medical Cannabis Cultivation Program (58-page document).
Importantly, covering definitions, such as “Commercial cannabis activity” and what is a “cultivation site.” In addition to important definitions of “pesticide” as well as “pest,” which can be found on page three. Captain Sunshine needs assistance in reviewing the appropriateness of definitions. Captain Sunshine believes there exists a lack of definitions such as Organics, Veganics, and Naturals.
Further, Article 2 of the Proposed Regulations for Medical Cannabis Cultivation Program covers Applications. The following is a list of the license types California is offering with prices to for an application. The following is only an Application Fee and does not include License Fees. Accordingly, the following are Application Fees and types: (1) Specialty Cottage Outdoor- $65 (2) Specialty Cottage Indoor- $100 (3) Specialty Cottage Mixed-Light- $285 (4) Specialty Outdoor- $130 (5) Specialty Indoor- $1,070 (6) Specialty Mixed-Light- $555 (7) Small Outdoor- $265 (8) Small Indoor- $1,935 (9) Small Mixed-Light- $1,105 (10) Medium Outdoor- $765 (11) Medium Indoor – $4,260 (12) Medium Mixed-Light- $2,435 (13) Nursery- $60 and (14) Processor $310.
Furthermore, Article three covers Cultivation License Fees and Requirements. The following are License Fees:
(1) Specialty Cottage Outdoor- $595 (2) Specialty Cottage Indoor- $900 (3) Specialty Cottage Mixed-Light- $2,560 (4) Specialty Outdoor- $1,185 (5) Specialty Indoor- $9,620 (6) Specialty Mixed-Light- $4,980 (7) Small Outdoor- $2,370 (8) Small Indoor- $17,430 (9) Small Mixed-Light- $9,960 (10) Medium Outdoor- $6,890 (11) Medium Indoor- $38,350 (12) Medium Mixed-Light- $21,915 (13) Nursery- $560 (14) and Processor- $2,790.
As well, Article four covers Cultivation Site Requirements. More so, describing the need for “Premise Diagrams” to “Standards of cleanliness” and importantly “environmental protection measures.” Whereas, Article Six covers administration of Records and Reporting. Article Seven covers the needs for transparency and honesty with Investigations, Inspections, and Audits. Overall, this is a great step towards operating with direction for medical cannabis in California.
Types of regulations under the proposal
Under the proposal cannabis dispensaries will only operate deliveries from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Captain Sunshine thinks this is unreasonable. First off, this is Medical Cannabis for patients who are in need of medicine, then access needs to be 24 hours. This is logical because someone who is in hospice on their death bed in pain and who wants to smoke some cannabis, they have the right to die how they desire, in peace and with dignity.
Further, cannabis dispensaries will only sell up to 8 ounces of cannabis to a patient/ member or caregiver in one day. This proposal is illogical as well. If a Cannabis nonprofit has the ability to provide quality and affordable medicine when demand is low and surplus is high, patients have the right to cheap affordable medicine. Therefore, 8 ounces in one day is illogical.
As well, Cannabis corporations will be at least 600 feet distance from schools. Captain Sunshine has no challenge to this proposal at this time.
To continue, edible cannabis production will be in serving sizes of 10 milligrams of THC or less, and 100 milligrams of THC or less for the edible cannabis product. Whereas, manufactured cannabis, like tinctures, and waxes are capable of having 1,000 milligrams of THC per cannabis product.
Captain Sunshine does not understand the argument for the proposal of cannabis corporations no longer being able to distribute free samples of cannabis. Why not?
To continue, cannabis farmers only have permission to grow up to 4 acres.
Agreeably, all cannabis packaging is child resistant.
In addition, applicants undergo a background check, any findings requires a statement of rehabilitation for each offense and communicate the need for consideration for a license.
Nonprofit cannabis corporations are given a six-month grace period. Therefore, any nonprofit cannabis corporations in operation by Jan. 2, 2018 will have permission to continue to operate until July 2, 2018. However, the cannabis applicant must apply for a license and receive approval. After July 2, 2018 the applicant will need a license to continue operating.
Importantly, medical cannabis distributors will be able to sell untested cannabis for 180 days after licensure approval or until Dec. 31, 2018, whichever is first. In addition, the medical cannabis distributors need to label all cannabis stating it is not in compliance with new state testing laws.
Why is this happening?
The Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act of California requires all cannabis businesses to have access to licensure under criteria and expectations with the start of 2018.
California State Legislature and the Governor Jerry Brown sign into law three bills. Accordingly, Assembly Bill 243, Assembly Bill 266, and Senate Bill 643. Together, these create the regulatory land licensing framework for medical cannabis. The licensing framework is in coordination through the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act. The Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act establishes the Bureau of Medical Cannabis Regulation for the Department of Consumer Affairs.
The Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act divides state responsibility for licensing agencies. The distributions of licensing authorities is the California Department of Food and Agriculture, the California Department of Public Health, and the Bureau of Medical Cannabis Regulation. As such, the Bureau of Medical Cannabis Regulation is the lead agency for regulating California cannabis.
At this time, the Bureau of Medical Cannabis Regulation does not issue licenses.