Cal NORML's 2017 Accomplishments and Plans for 2018

PLEASE JOIN CAL NORML OR RENEW YOUR MEMBERSHIP TO HELP US CONTINUE OUR WORK IN 2018.

Over 60 cannabis bills, most of them regulatory, were introduced in Sacramento this year, a three-fold increase from last year. Cal NORML tracked bills with a focus on consumer rights and kept our members informed of pending changes and hearings. We fought for allowing mixed premises for recreational and medical cannabis businesses, and for temporary event licenses, among other amendments.

Once more, Cal NORML protected driving rights for cannabis consumers, lobbying for changes to SB 65, which as introduced would have increased penalties for smoking while driving. We were able to get the bill amended to keep violations to infractions only. Another bill, AB 6, would have allowed for oral swab testing for drivers, a still-unproven technology. With input from Cal NORML, the bill was amended to convene a task force on impaired driving, on which Cal NORML has a seat. A bill that would establish a per se standard for a marijuana DUI if found in combination with alcohol was defeated this year, but will likely be introduced again next year.

We campaigned against legislation to increase penalties for smoking or vaping marijuana, including a bill that would have outlawed vaping on beaches, which was vetoed by Gov. Brown with help from our members who contacted his office.

Meanwhile, draft regulations were issued by all three agencies that will govern cannabis commerce. Cal NORML reviewed them and sent comments requesting changes to promote affordable access. We worked with the manufacturing committee of the California Cannabis Industry Association on a petition drive addressing dosage and labeling of medical products. We also submitted comments on the state Environmental Impact Report on cannabis cultivation.

We are making progress on our campaigns for employment rights and medical rights for patients, aligning with supportive groups and honing language for legislative measures we hope to see introduced in 2018. We held a Lobby Day in Sacramento in April that was attended by hundreds of advocates visiting scores of legislators’ offices, and we issued a comprehensive report titled “Marjuana Legalization and the Opioid Crisis” in November.

We are working on redesigning our website with all the new information about laws and regulations, in a more user-friendly format. This will be a costly but worthwhile project, enabling us to educate and activate more Californians.

As California begins recreational marijuana sales on January 1, much work remains to be done, in the legal and regulatory arenas at the state and local levels, and in the realm of human rights.

PLEASE JOIN CAL NORML OR RENEW YOUR MEMBERSHIP TO HELP US CONTINUE OUR WORK IN 2018.

Read more about Cal NORML's mission, accomplishments, and goals