California Senate approves bill to extend temporary cannabis licenses

The California Senate on Thursday moved to close a licensing gap for state marijuana growers, the latest problem to bedevil the shaky legal marketplace.

Scores of cannabis cultivators have seen their temporary licenses expire before the state has been able to replace them. Companies caught in that backlog have been stranded in a legal lurch – technically unable to do business in the legal marijuana economy.

Voting 32-4 without debate, the Senate passed a bill that would allow the state to extend those temporary licenses until replacements are approved.

The bill now goes to the Assembly, where it is expected to pass.

Lindsay Robinson, executive director of the California Cannabis Industry Association, said in a statement that the bill is “critical … for stabilizing the regulated cannabis industry.”

The bill’s sponsor, Democratic Sen. Mike McGuire of Healdsburg, warned that growers marooned without valid licenses could fall into the illicit market – through no fault of their own.

He says the proposal will create a short-term bridge “to avoid an impending crisis.”

Meanwhile, state regulators have also taken steps to ease the problem, authorizing the issuance of provisional licenses in certain cases to close the gap.

Initially, marijuana businesses were issued only temporary licenses. Those are now being replaced with annual licenses, but the transition has been slow and created bottlenecks that left some growers without valid licenses.

The state, meanwhile, has been sending menacing letters to businesses whose temporary licenses expire, warning them to cease activity “immediately.”

Without a fix, McGuire said 6,900 temporary growing licenses would expire by July 2019. In March alone, over 1,000 of those licenses will expire, he said.

– Associated Press 

2 comments on “California Senate approves bill to extend temporary cannabis licenses
  1. Pat on

    I’m willing to bet that “0” of the fractional !% that were issued temporary licenses are having a problem at all. On that note, the state should publish which growers are having a problem getting an annual license and why and those that haven’t had any “problem.” Would add a little transparency to this “good ‘ol boy” club atmosphere that’s very likely creating this situation. Where’s the state auditor’s office on this?

    What really gets me, is the comment that: “The state, meanwhile, has been sending menacing letters to businesses whose temporary licenses expire, warning them to cease activity “immediately.” Why? The vast majority of these “expired” licensees probably worked their butts off and scrimped and saved and also played by the state’s rules. And the state has the audacity to say this! All the more reason to keep future applicants from applying, and those that are getting these letters to say: “Fu*k this sh*t; I’m going black market.” Is it unreasonable? No. Has the state been unreasonable? A resounding: Yes. Does the state have these peoples public health and welfare and safety in mind? No. So what’s going on? Does the state see an “oversupply” that might hurt their tax revenue or their cartel buddies profits? And, could this be the manner in which the state has decided to address the problem?

    The less transparent the state is around this is, the more conjecture like this is going to rise up in to people’s heads. How much effort and money spent has been expended by the vast majority of individual state employees working for the BCC and other relevant agencies vs that of the grower whose licenses have expired? Doesn’t even compare. Does the state care? No. That’s why they’re taking the tact that they’re taking. It’s a number’s game to them. And they want to keep that supply/demand graph at an artificial equilibrium to meet their needs first, and second; that of their cartel buddies. Everyone else is treated less than human. This is called a “racket.” Where’s the state attorney general on this??

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  2. john ward on

    “The bill’s sponsor, Democratic Sen. Mike McGuire of Healdsburg, warned that growers marooned without valid licenses could fall into the illicit market – through no fault of their own.”

    Can we stop with the “illicit or black market” labeling. California under the BCC leadership has developed two distinct markets, the regulated one the BCC controls and the, what I like to call the consumers market. 80% of the cannabis being sold in California comes from the Consumer based market. One of the many mistakes the BCC made was to forget, that while it was easy to throw the vast majority under the bus, that bus was also carrying the consumers.
    Prop 64 was for the consumers, nothing in the initiative required the 20 year old working system
    ( prop 215 ) to be gutted. In fact if you read ca code 26014, it clearly forbid what has happened.
    I know the rest of the country is amused to follow California’s chaos ridden cannabis adventure, but remember some of the worlds finest cannabis comes from our Emerald Triangle area and has supplied the entire country for quite some time. The more chaos in California means the more our “consumer based” cannabis will continue to flood your market. California must clean up it’s act. Cannabis is a plant. Reefer madness doesn’t apply anymore.

    To Sen. Mike McGuire of Healdsburg, Thanks for trying, but former Gov Brown stacked the deck against us. He as well as most Ca. Politicians were very much against legalizing cannabis. Now they write the regs!
    Replace the BCC. All future board members should be required to at least know the difference between a pot plant and a tomato plant. I also suggest a couple a puffs before the meetings.

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