Legal Alerts Feb 08, 2016

Deadline Removed for Local Government Regulation of Medical Marijuana Cultivation in California

Cities Will Have More Time to Regulate

Deadline Removed for Local Government Regulation of Medical Marijuana Cultivation in California

The provision of the Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act that created a March 1 deadline for any local regulations of medical marijuana cultivation was removed last week with Gov. Jerry Brown’s signing of AB 21. The MMSRA required any local government to enact any regulation or ban of medical marijuana cultivation by that deadline lest state law govern. However, the bill’s sponsor, Assemblyman Jim Wood, indicated that deadline was inserted due to legislative error, and sponsored AB 21 to remove that deadline.

Removal of the deadline is not the only provision of AB 21. The MMRSA, as enacted, authorized a city, county, or city and county to regulate or ban the cultivation, storage, manufacture, transport, provision or other activity by a person otherwise exempt from state regulation, or to enforce that regulation or ban. AB 21 instead provides that an exemption from the state licensing requirements does not limit local authorities from exercising its police power authority to regulate cultivation. 

The enactment of AB 21 ends the mad dash of local governments throughout the state to enact cultivation bans or regulations prior to the March 1 deadline and will allow cities to take time to carefully consider any regulations or bans. 

For more information regarding this new legislation for your agency or public safety department, please contact one of the attorney authors of this Legal Alert listed at the right in the firm’s Public Safety group, or your BB&K attorney.

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Disclaimer: BB&K Legal Alerts are not intended as legal advice. Additional facts or future developments may affect subjects contained herein. Seek the advice of an attorney before acting or relying upon any information in this communiqué.

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