- Posted by Laura Croft, Esq
- On November 9, 2016
- cannabis, delivery, MCRSA, San Jose; breaking news; recreational use of marijuana; Prop 64; licensing; regulation; business
On October 17, 2016, San Jose City Council voted for new cannabis regulations, designed to allow medical cannabis collectives greater flexibility in their operations, with the hope of cutting down on illegal activity. In a 10-1 vote, the council agreed to amend Title 6 and Title 20, Medical Marijuana Zoning Code, to allow legally operating collectives to have two cultivation sites, one of which may be located anywhere in California (subject to local rules), in addition to one dispensing location. Additionally, the amendments to the Zoning code allow for cultivation facilities within the City of San Jose to be shared by two registered collectives.
These measures were added in response to the outdated vertical integration measures that required all cannabis and products—edibles, oils, tinctures and the like—to be manufactured on site. Vertical integration was intended to prevent a black market from taking hold in licensed collectives; however, it is now accepted that this is an unrealistic restriction, making it impossible for supply to meet demand.
The last critical part of the amendment provides that legally operating collectives can operate delivery services, subject to specific regulations promulgated and added to the existing City Manager Regulations for Medical Marijuana Collectives, including limiting delivery hours from 8am to midnight and requiring drivers to undergo background checks and registering with the San Jose Police Department.
The delivery of medical cannabis was completely banned in the City of San Jose leading up to recent reform; yet, over 30 marijuana delivery services actively advertise in San Jose. Under the proposal put forward at the October council meeting, only the 16 permitted collectives would be allowed to deliver marijuana. San Jose City Council Meeting.
The City of San Jose is hoping to streamline its local rules with the newly enacted statewide program, Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (“MCRSA”), codified by AB 243, AB 266, andSB 643. In anticipation of the implementation of Prop 64, allowing for the adult recreation use of marijuana, the City is loosening its policies and regulations relating to medical cannabis activity. However, in a plot twist, San Jose City Council passed an urgency ordinance on Tuesday, November 1, 2016, prohibiting recreational marijuana activity ahead of the election and in anticipation that Proposition 64 will march forward on the statewide ballot. The urgency ordinance reaffirms the San Jose regulations, stating that non-medical marijuana cannot be cultivated, processed, manufactured, distributed, tested or sold. Memorandum from the City Attorney’s Office and City Manager. Although the legal landscape around adult use of marijuana will change now that Prop 64 has passed, San Jose’s existing rules about zoning, taxes and licensing will stay in place.
San Jose Chief of police urges those engaging in medical cannabis activity to pursue a legal route and he hopes the new amendments will cut down on illegal activity. Presently, the Office of City Manager states: “It is illegal for any marijuana entity to operate in San Jose without first getting a Notice of Completed Registration as a Medical Marijuana Collective from the City. Violators are subject to closure and fines of up to $50,000 per offense, per day, as well as criminal prosecution.”
The City of San Jose is not taking new applications for Medical Marijuana Collectives at this time. If a collective is not named on this list, they are presently in violation of state and local law.
We invite you to contact CannaBusinessLaw for expert assistance in compliance with cannabis licensing, permitting and the application process relating to commercial cannabis in California.