Prepare for License Renewals

Every year, the California State Legislature introduces a slate of bills on diverse topics — from building codes and broadband infrastructure to cannabis licensing and taxes. Some become law. Others don’t survive committee.

Today’s bulletin highlights a handful of the many bills the California Senate and Assembly will consider during the next several months. As you read, think about how the proposal might impact your current or future business plans. If you support, oppose, or want to propose changes, this is the time to get informed and involved.

Note: A brief and simplified explanation of each bill is below. As you come across bills of interest to you, click the hyperlink or call us to learn the fine print.

Patient Access

Compassionate Access to Medical Cannabis

  • SB-311. Compassionate Access to Medical Cannabis Act or Ryan’s Law.
  • Introduced by Senator Hueso.
  • Terminally ill patients experience great difficulty in finding a medical care facility that will allow them to use cannabis within the facility, rather than being restricted to synthetic options.
  • Under this bill, certain health care facilities could no longer prohibit or interfere with a terminally ill patient’s onsite use of medical cannabis.
  • We support this bill. It helps patients and removes barriers to the medicinal use of cannabis.

 

Medicinal Cannabis for Animals

  • AB-384. Cannabis and cannabis products: animals: veterinary medicine.
  • Introduced by Assembly Member Kalra.
  • Currently, veterinarians can be disciplined for recommending medicinal cannabis for an animal. This bill opens the door for vets to provide such recommendations unless the vet is employed by or has an agreement with a cannabis licensee.
  • Guidelines would be adopted by the Veterinary Medical Board by 2023.
  • We support this bill. It allows animals to access the medicinal benefits of cannabis with proper medical guidance.

LICENSING & BUSINESS OPERATIONS

Provisional Licensing Extensions (More Time for CEQA)

  • SB-59. Cannabis licenses.
  • Introduced by Senator Caballero.
  • Provisional licenses were created as a bridge between temporary licenses and annual licenses. Annual licenses require a long and expensive CEQA compliance process. Two provisions are set to expire this year, which will cause the lapse of many provisional licenses (approximately 80% of California’s licenses are provisional). “Extinction events” like these have been punted year after year. This bill stops the need for short-term fixes by extending the deadlines to July 2028.

No Discrimination in Employment for THC in Drug Screening

  • AB-1256. Employment discrimination: cannabis screening test.
  • Introduced by Assembly Member Quirk.
  • This bill would prohibit an employer from discriminating against a person in hiring, termination, or employment because their drug screening test reveals the presence of THC.
  • We support this bill in ending the stigma toward cannabis.

Hemp Testing & Retail Sale

  • AB-1435. Noncannabis cannabinoids.
  • Introduced by Assembly Member Carrillo.
  • This bill creates testing and labeling requirements for non-cannabis cannabinoids (NCCs), such as hemp-derived CBD, which would be allowed in the cannabis supply chain. It also imposes a per-milligram excise tax, remitted by the manufacturer, to fund the Noncannabis Cannabinoid Tax Fund.

Delivery Vehicle Limits on Cannabis Carried

  • AB-1014. Cannabis: retailers: delivery: vehicles.
  • Introduced by Assembly Member McCarty.
  • Right now, regulations allow a delivery employee to carry up to a certain value of cannabis goods in the vehicle.
  • This bill adds nuance by creating different value tiers depending on the type of vehicle used for delivery. Regulations would be adopted to guide transportation safety standards and a delivery vehicle inspection and certification process would be developed.

LICENSING & BUSINESS OPERATIONS

  • AB 45/SB-235 Industrial hemp products
  • AB-214/SB-112 Budget Act of 2021
    AB-273 Cannabis: advertisements: highways
  • AB-290 Cannabis testing
  • AB-527 Controlled substances
  • AB-725 Cannabis tax: penalty
  • AB-1034 Cannabis: retail preparation, sale, or consumption of non-cannabis food and beverage products
  • SB-519 Controlled substances: decriminalization of certain hallucinogenic substances
  • SB-544 Cannabis testing
  • What are you tracking? Reply and let us know!

Remember: Each bill is a proposal (not a law) right now, so keep following the current rules and regulations.

The Legislature has until September 10 to pass and send bills to the Governor, who must sign or veto them by October 10. We’ll be following throughout the year; by Halloween, we will have news to report back to you!

UPCOMING EVENTS & EDIA

Cannalaw Summit
From Boutiques to Big Law – Navigating the changing legal landscape of the cannabis industry.
May 4th-6th – Online

Featuring a diverse range of perspectives from boutiques to big law, in-house counsel, and subject matter experts from across the cannabis industry the Cannalaw Summit (May 4th-6th – online) will bring the legal profession and the cannabis supply chain together to provide critical insight into current and future laws and regulations, address key individual cannabis practice challenges, and examine core considerations for firms looking to start, or strategically grow their cannabis practices.

Join Clark Howell Partners, Ariel Clark and Nicole Howell, as they lead crucial panel discussions on Righting the Wrongs: Addressing Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in Cannabis Law and Psychedelics: Removing Barriers to Access through Legalization & Litigation. Use discount CLS2021ACCH.

If you have any questions about how the above or would like to discuss how it could impact your business, please contact your attorney directly or call our main line at 877-257-2442.

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