5 May 2016
SF Gate write:
California’s cities and counties are rapidly warming to medical marijuana business — overturning longtime bans to approve dispensaries, deliveries, farms, edibles, kitchens and labs.
This week, the East Bay Express reports that Alameda County could license cannabis greenhouses and indoor cultivation on agricultural land by 2017. The County hopes to update its dispensary ordinance to allow edibles and extracts, as well as add one to three new pot shops by the Fall. Supervisor Nate Miley said counties are like sleeping giants on the issue of cannabis, and Alameda County is among the first to stir.
“I think we are stirring — just how much and how quickly, that’s to be determined, but I’m going to keep pushing,” he said.
Miley said attorneys for every county in the state — the county counsels — have met to discuss updating local laws to match the state’s new Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act. For the first time in 19 years, local officials have clear, black and white lines from state lawmakers on legal medical pot activity.
“MMRSA helps,” said Miley. “It provides the necessary regulatory cover for jurisdictions that want to move ahead with supporting medical cannabis.” Alameda County is not alone. In the past few weeks:
— Humboldt County approved a cultivation ordinance allowing massive farms in January.
— Emeryville has begun investigating how to become a cannabis biotech hub for California.
— last night the City of Oakland moved to add eight new dispensaries per year, as well as license deliveries, labs, kitchens and distribution warehouses.
— Marin County is moving to add its first licensed dispensary.
— The desert town of Cathedral City has approved medical cannabis cultivation.
— Monterey County is creating an ordinance on the sales and cultivation of medical marijuana.
— The City of Merced approved its first four dispensaries April 20
— Mendocino County is working on a Mendocino Cannabis Appellations Project, similar to those for wine.
California’s medical cannabis sector generates several billion dollars in revenue each year. About one in 20 California adults is estimated to have used medical cannabis for a serious condition. Fully legalizing cannabis for adults would generate about $1 billion per year in taxes, state officials estimate.
The state of California is hiring about 126 people and spending $24.6 million on new state regulations in the coming year.