Cannabis Bills to Watch in Sacramento in 2020

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THIS PAGE WILL BE UPDATED AS BILLS ARE AMENDED OR VOTED ON.

UPDATE 5/8/2020 – On May 21, the Assembly Business & Professions Committee will hear three bills, each of which would enact $30,000/day state fines for operating unlicensed cannabis businesses, or allowing property to be used for one. They are:

AB 3330 (O’Donnell) – Would impose a civil penalty of up to $30,000 for collecting a fee or any other form of compensation for advertising or marketing the sale or provision of cannabis or cannabis products, or for the completion, initiation, or facilitation of the sale or provision of cannabis or cannabis products, unless the sale or provision is done in compliance with MAUCRSA (the law establishing state licenses for cannabis businesses).

AB-2094 (Jones-Sawyer) – Allows fines up to $30K/day for landlords, homeowners.

AB-2122 (Blanco Rubio) – Also has $30 K fines; would redirect funds raised from enforcement fines to the A.G. and participating agencies (like local govts such as Berkeley) instead of the general fund. Berkeley cannabis commission supports.

CAL NORML HAS CONCERNS ABOUT THESE BILLS. WHILE WE WANT TO SEE LICENSED BUSINESSES THRIVE, UNTIL LOCAL JURISDICTIONS ARE MORE WILLING TO LICENSE, AND BARRIERS TO LICENSING CAN BE LOWERED, WE CANNOT SUPPORT EXCESSIVE FINES. Send us your input.

Also scheduled for a B&P hearing on 5/21 is AB2749 (Stone), requiring testing standards for contaminants in cannabis.

May 5, 2020 – After the entire California legislative session was suspended in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the state Assembly reconvened yesterday (with restrictions on in-person participation at hearings). The state Senate plans to re-convene on Monday, May 11.

Committee chairs have reached out to lawmakers asking them to prioritize bills that address the pandemic, wildfires, and homelessness. Unfortunately, it is unlikely that we will see movement this year on our two top-priority bills: employment rights for cannabis users or a tax reduction for cannabis businesses.

Cal NORML has cancelled its June 1, 2020 Lobby Day due to health concerns for participants. We continue to move forward on our legislative priorities for next year, and in the meantime we are tracking bills that will be moving in the legislature in 2020, as well as keeping our members informed of regulatory proposals and state COVID relief programs for which cannabis businesses qualify.

The following bills have been referred to the Assembly Business and Professions committee (but no hearing date has been set):

AB-2312 (Quirk) – Would authorize the Bureau of Cannabis Control (BCC) to issue a state temporary event license to a retail licensee authorizing onsite cannabis retail sales of cannabis or cannabis products to, and consumption by, persons 21 years of age or older at an event held at a venue that is licensed by the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, provided that the local jurisdiction authorized the event and onsite sales and consumption of cannabis or cannabis products may only occur in a separate and distinct area from alcohol sales and consumption. CAL NORML SUPPORTS.

AB2716 (Irwin) – Existing law prohibits a cannabis licensee from advertising on a billboard or similar device located on an interstate highway or on a state highway that crosses the California border. This bill instead would prohibit such activity visible from an interstate highway or on a state highway within the California border. CAL NORML SUPPORTS WITH AMENDMENTS, ALLOWING A BUSINESS TO ADVERTISE AT ITS HIGHWAY EXIT.

AB 2842 (McCarty) – Would establish a tiered system for cannabis deliveries, limiting the value of cannabis goods that can be carried by bicycle deliverers to $500; the value for motorcycles and scooters to $950; for cars to $20,000; and for cargo vans to $30,000. Requires the BCC to work with CHP to develop transportation safety standards for all the different value tiers. CAL NORML OPPOSES.

There is a chance that a consolidation of cannabis regulatory agencies proposed by the Governor, and other items, will be included in an expected cannabis or budget trailer bill, as early as May or as late as August.

Send a message to CaNORML