First printed in California County News
State regulators released the first draft of permanent rules governing California’s marijuana industry on Friday. Among the 315 pages of documents from the Bureau of Cannabis Control, the Department of Food and Agriculture, and the Department of Public Health are some significant changes that could greatly impact California’s medical and recreational marijuana sectors.
Perhaps the most striking provision would allow marijuana deliveries anywhere in California, regardless of whether or not the local jurisdiction approves.
Currently, cities and counties can ban marijuana deliveries. Under the new regs, they would have no such power. A delivery free-for-all would greatly expand the marketplace for legal marijuana, but will undoubtedly roil local governments and their advocates.
In addition to the delivery provision, the new rules would allow for potency increases on some edible marijuana products. They would also introduce new child-resistant packaging requirements.
Another important facet of the new regulations isn’t a change at all, but rather the preservation of a controversial loophole under current law. Despite the outcry from marijuana industry professionals, the Department of Food and Agriculture’s new rules do not contain any caps on the size of cannabis cultivation farms. The California Growers Association and others have argued such caps are necessary to prevent large corporate dominance of the state’s marijuana market. They also believe a 1-acre cap on grows is mandated by law.