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Licensing Process Update

As the licensing process continues to evolve - either through clarification from the State, recently enacted legislation, or new interpretations of existing regulations locally - it is critical to keep up to speed on what is required to ensure local compliance. Below are a few key points everyone should be aware of to remain in good standing.

Transitioning from a provisional license to an annual license under CDFA is a different process than renewing an annual license. Annual licenses will not be given until the applicant has met all the application requirements including updating their cultivation plan and CEQA compliance. Prior to renewing a provisional license, the licensee will be required to pay the annual commercial license fee.

The property and premise diagrams regulated under sections 8105 and 8106 require specific details that have been expanded since the original application submittal. Further, each type of application (cultivation, processing or nursery) have different requirements specific to the property and premise diagram. Applicants will also have to provide the State with an updated surety bond, enroll in the State Water Resources Control Board Cannabis Cultivation General Order, obtain a Lake or Streambed Alteration Agreement, and meet CEQA compliance. For the operators involved in the local CEQA programmatic initial study which includes roughly 44 projects, we are hopeful the study will be approved by late February 2020. At the local level, you will also be required to update all live scans associated with the application.

Another recent local clarification, is the requirement of operators who have multiple cultivation licenses to obtain a processor license. It is likely that your cultivation license specifies space for processing specific to that license. However, if there is the intent to process flower from multiple licenses in one designated area, a third-party processor license is required.

Jennifer Rosenthal is a local cannabis and criminal defense attorney. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and does not reflect an official position of the Association.

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