Roundup of New Cannabis Laws in California
In a step towards shaping California's cannabis landscape, Governor Gavin Newsom took action on a series of bills related to the industry. His decisions, encompassing both approvals and vetoes, reflect the evolving regulatory framework within the cannabis sector.
Cannabis Bills Signed Into Law:
- SB 700: Prohibits employers from questioning job applicants about prior cannabis use. Read more about this new law on The Laboring Oar®, our Employment Blog.
- SB 622: Aims to replace single-use plastic “plant tags” used in seed-to-sale tracking with environmentally-friendly alternatives.
- SB 302: Extends the right for those aged 65+ with serious chronic illnesses to use medical cannabis at health facilities.
- AB 1021: Make it automatically legal for health professionals in California to prescribe and dispense a Schedule I drug once the federal government reschedules it.
- AB 1171: Allows licensed cannabis businesses to sue unlicensed competitors in state superior court if they can prove damages.
- SB 753: Makes it a felony offense to cultivate, harvest or process more than six cannabis plants in a way that intentionally or with gross negligence causes “substantial environmental harm”.
- AB 623: Adjusts THC variance testing requirements for low-THC products.
- AB 1126: Prohibits the unauthorized use of the state’s universal cannabis symbol and authorizes the CDTFA to seize products that feature the symbol without authorization as contraband.
- AB 1684: Expands the government’s ability to impose administrative fines and penalties on unlicensed cannabis businesses.
- SB 51: Allows social equity applicants to continue to apply for and renew provisional retailer licenses through January 1, 2031.
- SB 540: Mandates educational brochures for first-time cannabis shoppers and periodic reviews of labeling regulations.
- AB 1448: Redirects civil penalties from unlicensed cannabis businesses to local jurisdictions.
- SB 833: Allows cultivators to change their license types to a smaller category or inactive status without a full re-application for a license.
- AB 993: Add representatives of the state Civil Rights Department and Department of Industrial Relations to a state cannabis task force.
Cannabis Bills Vetoed by the Governor:
- SB 58: This bill would have legalized the possession and use of certain psychedelics, such as psilocybin, DMT and mescalin, for adults aged 21+.
- AB 374: This bill would have legalized “cannabis cafes” and live performances at dispensaries.
- AB 1207: This bill would have imposed stricter regulations for cannabis product packaging that could be considered “attractive to children” and would have specifically banned the use of certain images such as cartoons, toys, robots, humans, animals, fruits and vegetables.
Reach out to a member of our Cannabis team to discuss the implications for cannabis businesses in California.