San Diego Pot Businesses Dodge Bullet, For Now

The legal marijuana industry in San Diego, California avoided a complete ban on the commercial cultivation, processing, distribution, and testing of cannabis products this week, with a unanimous vote of the city council to direct city staff to study the issues further and report back within nine months.

An amendment to the land use laws for California’s second largest city in response to the passage of Prop. 64 last year, the proposal had seemingly been rushed before the council as a “direct docket” item, circumventing normal channels of committee and public review. The proposal also rejected a previous recommendation from the City Planning Commission to allow the business activities under discussion.

The hastiness of the action was evident, as council members struggled in front of packed council chambers to compose amendments concerning outdoor home cultivation and to request further study of the proposed bans. Councilmember David Alvarez, who supports a regulated cannabis industry, noted “…a lot of the issues being raised today could have been handled had we gone through a different process.” Council President Myrtle Cole, who is responsible for the council agenda, did not return a call by the end of day Wednesday to explain why the proposal was listed as a direct docket item.

Read more at High Times

First Major California City To Welcome Recreational Weed

San Diego just lost a pro football team to Los Angeles, but take heart, jilted NFL fans: You just gained legal recreational marijuana. And the way things stand now, if L.A. wants any weed, it will have to come to you.

As The San Diego Union Tribune is reporting, the Southern California city became the first major urban area in the state to prepare for the recreational cannabis sales allowed under Prop. 64, the marijuana legalization ballot measure overwhelmingly approved by voters in November.

It’s legal for all adults 21 and over in California to consume, possess and cultivate marijuana, but the only places where cannabis can be legally purchased are existing medical marijuana dispensaries. Retail marijuana stores may open as early as Jan. 1, 2018—a deadline dependent on state and local lawmakers getting work done. Cities and counties need to explicitly allow dispensaries, and state lawmakers need to craft statewide rules for recreational marijuana cultivation, testing and sales.

Read more at High Times

California’s Best Cannabis Innovators

California’s Best Cannabis Innovators

Canopy and Eaze

The cannabis industry is ripe for opportunity. In fact, 8 out of 10 Americans support the legalization of cannabis for medical use, according to NORML. It’s new; it’s growing (ArcView projects a 30 percent annual growth over the next 3-5 years); and it’s endlessly fascinating. And, in California, ArcView estimates cannabis to be worth $6.5 billion by 2020.

Read more at Dope Magazine

A Glance at Proposed State Spending for Marijuana Programs

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California Gov. Jerry Brown this month recommended spending over $50 million in his proposed budget for marijuana regulation. It’s anticipated the funds will be repaid after taxes begin coming in. Here’s a breakdown of some of the proposals:

– Department of Consumer Affairs: $22.5 million, to develop regulations for the transportation, storage, distribution and sale of legal marijuana, along with licensing and enforcement.

– Department of Food and Agriculture: $23.4 million, to develop regulations for marijuana cultivation, including licenses for growers.

Read more at High Times

California Looks to Build $7 Billion Legal Pot Economy

BY MICHAEL R. BLOOD AND DON THOMPSON

ASSOCIATED PRESS

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — The future of California’s legal marijuana industry is being shaped in a warren of cubicles tucked inside a retired basketball arena, where a garden of paper cannabis leaves sprouts on file cabinets and a burlap sack advertising “USA Home Grown” dangles from a wall.

Read more at High Times

CA Pot Regs: ‘Building the Airplane While it’s Being Flown’

Regulation looms, but California’s illicit cannabis market is still thriving. One state senator said that with almost 20 different license types and tens of thousands of potential licensees, it could take the state up to 10 years to get everything under control.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — The future of California’s legal marijuana industry is being shaped in a warren of cubicles tucked inside a retired basketball arena, where a garden of paper cannabis leaves sprouts on file cabinets and a burlap sack advertising “USA Home Grown” dangles from a wall.

Here, in the outskirts of Sacramento, a handful of government workers face a daunting task: By next year, craft regulations and rules that will govern the state’s emerging legal pot market, from where and how plants can be grown to setting guidelines to track the buds from fields to stores.

Read more at Cannabis Now

Emerald Cup 2016

Emerald Cup 2016

It’s The Most Wonderful Cup of the Year

This year’s Emerald Cup drew a record number of attendees with around 30,000 people participating in the weekend festivities at the Sonoma County fairgrounds. I was among those lucky enough to attend and got to view and smoke some of this year’s best cannabis strains.

Read more at Dope Magazine

Wait Until… When? California Latest to Beg Recreational Marijuana Delay

California cultivates, sells and consumes a titanic amount of cannabis—billions and billions of dollars’ worth. For more than a decade, medical-marijuana cardholders have been able to buy cannabis over the counter in licensed dispensaries, who remit taxes to the state and federal governments.

Nothing about this is new or particularly complicated: Business asks government for license, license is granted, sales begin. 

And yet, figuring out how to do the same with recreational marijuana retail stores—something four other states have managed to accomplish without too much drama—is, somehow, turning out to be too complex for the world’s seventh-biggest economy.

Read more at High Times