Local and state government agencies across California have a significant amount of work to do before January 2, 2018. Proposition 64 – The Adult Use of Marijuana Act – provided that the state would issue business licenses for recreational marijuana sales no later than January 1, 2018. (Because January 1 is a state holiday, the licenses are scheduled to begin issuing on January 2). Much of this work fell to the California Bureau of Medical Cannabis Regulation. The Bureau was formed by legislation enacted in 2015 to regulate medical marijuana in the state. Now, the bureau chief has been named California’s Cannabis Czar.
The Mercury News spoke with state Cannabis Czar Lori Ajax to learn what Californians can expect to happen with recreational cannabis business licenses come January 2. Ajax acknowledges that not every business license will be issued on Day 1, but claims that applications will be accepted, and the online system will be up and running. Ajax also claims that temporary licenses may be issued in order to facilitate a timely start to sales of recreational marijuana. Furthermore, medical marijuana business licenses will continue to be valid until the state makes final determinations about the regulation of medical marijuana licensees. Holders of medical marijuana cards will, therefore, be able to obtain cannabis from local dispensaries, regardless of the state of recreational business licenses on January 2, 2018. Continue reading