On November 8, 2016, California voters passed Proposition 64 which legalizes the nonmedical use of cannabis starting January 1, 2018. Below are a few quick facts about the initiative taken directly from the California Office of Manufactured Cannabis Safety. Corona & Peabody is dedicated to guiding our clients through licensing, compliance and in the defense of those wrongly accused of use, sale and transportation of marijuana.
- 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.
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 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.”
If you have been arrested or cited for possession, sale, use or cultivation of marijuana give us a call at (213) 488-0022.
5. Will my medical cultivation license work for nonmedical grows?
NO. Medical cultivation licenses are not valid for producing nonmedical product. However, a licensed medical cultivator could also obtain a nonmedical cultivation license under Business and Professions Code section 26053, provided the site meets all the requirements for both the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MCRSA) and the initiative. The California Department of Food and Agriculture is responsible for licensing cultivators under the initiative.
6. 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.
7. Who regulates edibles?
The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) is responsible for regulating and licensing nonmedical cannabis manufacturers by 2018. This includes cannabis-infused edibles.