Much has been made about the apparent slow rollout of the recreational cannabis sales market in California. Various factors have combined to inhibit the explosion of economic activity expected in a state with a massive population that is already used to legal cannabis.
At times, the state agencies overseeing the legal cannabis industry in CA have seemed overwhelmed. To be fair, there is a lot involved when it comes to a state the size of California and the licensing of several thousand marijuana businesses in the first year alone – while simultaneously reigning in hundreds of unlicensed businesses operating in the state.
But new regulations released last week by the three state agencies overseeing the legal industry show that California is continuing to make progress. “The Bureau of Cannabis Control, California Department of Public Health and California Department of Food and Agriculture have proposed to readopt their emergency regulations that are currently in effect, extending the time those regulations are in effect for another 180-day period,” The BCC said in a written statement. “The three licensing authorities are proposing some changes to the regulatory provisions to provide greater clarity to licensees and to address issues that have arisen since the emergency regulations went into effect.
“Highlighted among the proposed changes is that applicants may now complete one license application and obtain one license to conduct medicinal and adult-use cannabis activity. Additionally, licensees may continue to engage in commercial cannabis activities with other licensees regardless of designation as this provision is no longer limited by time.
“’These proposed changes to our emergency regulations are based on feedback from our stakeholders, and information gathered over the first four months of implementation,’ said Bureau of Cannabis Control Chief Lori Ajax.”
Other notable changes include an explicit ban on what is known as the “ice cream truck model”. Instead of delivery services stocking vehicles with as much product as they can to fulfill orders that come in, trucks must stock their inventory from a physical location after orders come in. The monetary value of product that delivery drivers may carry at any time, however, was increased from $3,000 to $10,000.
While many questions were left unanswered by the latest set of regulations – like will product on the shelves on July 1st be allowed to be tested under new regulations or will it have to be destroyed – progress is being made in what will be by far the biggest single market for legal cannabis in the United States. Considering the alternative to slow progress is no progress at all, maybe that’s the best that can be hoped for right now.