When medical marijuana was first legalized in California more than two decades ago, the state was not heavily involved in the regulation process. While anyone in the state could use medical marijuana if they had a valid doctor’s recommendation for the use of medical cannabis, it was up the counties and incorporated municipalities to decide if there could be dispensaries in their respective jurisdictions and if there could be grow operations.
Not surprisingly, some areas were very liberal with respect to medical marijuana production and sales and others were less liberal. Some areas did not permit any growing or sales within the city or county limits. A few years ago, the state started to become concerned that they were getting left out of the process, and this was creating a regulatory void. While it was up to individual municipalities to grow or dispense, there were many other state laws regarding agriculture and water usage. Since much of California is in the desert, and water supply is often far less than demand, this can create a major issue. Continue reading