There have been many versions of regulatory laws ever since California State voted to legalize the use of cannabis by adults. Finally, in January this year, the Office of Administrative Law approved the final draft of regulations in this regard. Rival groups claim that this draft does not completely legalize use of marijuana in CA, but continues to regulate the substance for adult use. Because it has been finalized now, all those involved in the cannabis industry, including consumers, should be aware of the pertinent laws. Below are a few things you should know about California laws on cannabis.
Distribution of Cannabis
Although a bill was passed in the state long ago (Compassionate Use Act [Prop 215]), which allowed patients to use medical marijuana with a valid doctor’s prescription, California enacted the Senate Bill 420 only in 2003, in order to set up a proper system to regulate cultivation and distribution of cannabis through collectives or cooperatives. Under the final law though, any entity engaging in commercial marijuana activity without appropriate licensing from the state and the local jurisdiction would be deemed noncompliant with the state’s new cannabis regulations.
Fines and Penalties
In simple words, even if you are a caregiver serving less than 5 patients, you need to be licensed to be administering marijuana. Unlicensed operators will be fined heavily, and the governing authorities may even have the Departments of Water and Power cut utility supply for such entities. In some cases, violators of this law may be charged with criminal offence, and risk cannabis litigation. Know about this by getting a round of cannabis consultation from an experienced lawyer specializing in the area.
White Labeling of Products
The final cannabis laws do not ban white labeling the way many had feared. White labeling refers to co-packing or rebranding a product under a different name. However, the new law restricts this between licensed entities. In other words, a licensed brand is not allowed to co-pack cannabis from an unlicensed producer.
Taxes on Marijuana
The state had imposed a 40 percent tax on marijuana use earlier, and the new laws do not overturn that. Supporters assume prices will come down though, as there is now a proper system to regulate collection and distribution of cannabis in California legally. In some jurisdictions, the administrative bodies are looking forward to reductions in their local tax rates, while others are hoping that the state tax legislation will come up with a solution soon.