- Posted by Erica Treeby
- On April 4, 2017
- California, cannabis, Cannabis Permit, commercial cultivation, cultivation, delivery, dispensaries, manufacturing, MCRSA, medical cannabis, Proposition 64, regulations, taxes, zoning ordinance
THE COUNTY OF SANTA BARBARA
On January 19, 2016, the Board of Supervisors adopted Medical Cannabis Regulations set forth at Article X, Chapter 35 of the County Code of Santa Barbara County. Although, the County is not currently issuing licences or permits for medical Cannabis activities, that may change in the future. At a hearing on February 17, 2017, the Board of Supervisors established a short term, advisory ad-hoc sub committee to assist in the development of a permanent Ordinance related to the regulation of medicinal and recreational marijuana. Also discussed at the hearing was the possibility of an ordinance creating local business licenses for certain types of State marijuana licenses in the unincorporated area of Santa Barbara County.
Commercial cultivation of medical Cannabis is prohibited. See, Santa Barbara County Code Section 35-1003. However, subsection A.2 provides an exemption for legal non-conforming uses. Medical Cannabis cultivation sites that are legal under state law (i.e., conform with the regulations set forth in MCRSA), and were in existence on January 19, 2016, are legal non-conforming uses and may continue to operate.
Personal medical Cannabis cultivation is permitted by a qualified patient or caregiver if the cultivation occurs on the lot that contains the lawful residential structure occupied by the qualified patient; does not exceed 100 square feet; conforms to all applicable zoning regulations; and all current California and county building codes. None of the medical Cannabis grown may be sold, distributed, or donated to another person. Santa Barbara County Code Section 35-1003.
Medical Cannabis dispensaries are prohibited. The County zoning ordinances state that “medical marijuana dispensaries” are not allowed in any zone district in the unincorporated areas of Santa Barbara County. See, County Land Use and Development Code, Sections 35.20.030.A.3.d and 35.42.195; Montecito Land Use and Development Code, Section 35.420.030.A.3.c and 35.430.125; and Coastal Zoning Ordinance, Sections 35-144I.
The Medical Cannabis Regulations adopted by the county on January 19, 2016, do not prohibit or otherwise affect medical marijuana deliveries and/or delivery operations.
For answers to frequently asked questions regarding the County’s medical Cannabis regulations, see: http://longrange.sbcountyplanning.org/programs/medicalmarijuana/medicalmarijuana.php.
THE CITY OF SANTA BARBARA
Per Ordinance 5733, effective February 25, 2016, commercial cultivation of medical Cannabis is prohibited. Santa Barbara Municipal Code Section 28.87.300(C).
Similar to the county’s regulations, the City of Santa Barbara allows a qualified patient to engage in indoor or outdoor cultivation for personal medical use on a single site, not exceeding 100 square feet in area, provided that the parcel is occupied by the qualified patient living in a lawful residential unit. Santa Barbara Municipal Code Section 28.87.300(B).
Medical Cannabis dispensaries are regulated by Chapter 28.80 of the City’s Zoning Ordinance. A Storefront Collective Dispensary must obtain a permit from the City in order to operate. Dispensaries are allowed only on parcels within the City which are zoned for commercial uses, and are in one of the following five areas:
- Outer State Street Area;
- Upper De la Vina Area;
- Mission Street Area;
- Milipas Street;
- West Pueblo Medical Facility Area.
Only one dispensary is permitted in each of the five areas listed above; and the City may not issue a total of more than three (3) Storefront Collective Dispensary permits at any one time. Per the regulations, members and/or managing members of the Storefront Collective may collectively cultivate medical Cannabis for the dispensary only within the boundaries of the counties of Santa Barbara, Ventura, or San Luis Obispo, and only at the real property identified for such cultivation on the approved Storefront Collective Dispensary Permit application. Medical Cannabis edible products may be sold at a Storefront Collective Dispensary.
On November 8, 2016, the City’s voters passed the “Santa Barbara Marijuana Control Act,” which taxes marijuana businesses to help fund general city services at a rate of 20% of gross receipts for medical marijuana and non- medical marijuana. The City estimated that the tax will generate revenues of between $1,100,000 and $2,200,000 annually.
Because both the Medical Cannabis Regulation & Safety Act (“MCRSA”) and the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA) give counties and cities the authority to permit, partially ban, or expressly ban medical Cannabis activities within their borders, its crucial to keep abreast of the latest developments in local law. We invite you to contact CannaBusinessLaw for expert assistance with Cannabis licensing, permitting, and compliance relating to commercial Cannabis in California.