The California legislature is at the moment finalizing a invoice (SB-1459) which might set up a provisional licensing regime for California hashish companies. The invoice moved into “enrolled” standing late final week, which implies that SB-1459 has been accredited by each homes of the state legislature and is being proofread to make sure all amendments have been correctly inserted. As soon as SB-1459 is “appropriately engrossed”, solely a signature from Governor Brown is required for the invoice to take rapid impact. In all, provisional licensing appears imminent.
These pending, provisional licenses would supply holders with a year-long, non-renewable, provisional license to function after submitting accomplished license purposes. These provisional licenses would alleviate pressures on licensing businesses attributable to the backlog of pending purposes. Provisional licenses would additionally permit holders to proceed working, quite than probably ceasing operations later this 12 months. On that time, the SB-1459 legislative findings are compelling:
The numerous variety of cultivation license purposes pending with native authorities that would not have enough assets to course of these purposes earlier than the candidates’ momentary licenses expire on January 1, 2019, threatens to create a significant disruption within the industrial hashish market.”
Hashish licensing in California is a comparatively current phenomenon and is a requirement for any hashish enterprise working within the state. Underneath present regulation, licensing authorities could subject momentary licenses pending the approval of ultimate licenses. Non permanent licenses may be issued for 120-day intervals, with sure allowable extensions. In line with the Senate Ground Evaluation of SB-1459, the momentary license was meant as an middleman step whereas native and state regulatory our bodies themselves got here into compliance with California’s new regulation. Notably, below the present regulation, momentary licenses can not be issued after December 31, 2018.
Maybe as anticipated, hundreds of hashish companies submitted license purposes this 12 months. Many of those licenses have been sought in Humboldt, Monterey, and Santa Barbara counties, the place regulators weren’t ready to (and haven’t been in a position to) tackle the flurry of purposes. As famous within the Senate Evaluation accompanying SB-1459, the barrage of environmental disasters in California—notably in Santa Barbara—have contributed to the delay within the course of. Thus, of the hundreds of purposes which have been submitted to this point, many have but to be accomplished.
Initially launched in February 2018 as a technique to invoice regarding agricultural reporting points, SB-1459 underwent substantial revisions through the legislative course of. SB-1459 is now nearly a wholly new piece of laws and incorporates the provisional licensing scheme meant to alleviate the pressures recognized above. If the present SB-1459 is codified into regulation, it might allow licensing authorities—of their sole discretion—to subject provisional licenses for a non-renewable interval of 12 months. These licenses could possibly be issued to candidates that maintain and even held a brief license for a similar premises and identical industrial hashish exercise sought to be licensed, have submitted accomplished license purposes, and in reference to these accomplished license purposes have submitted proof that compliance with the California Environmental High quality Act (or “CEQA”) is underway. Notably, the Senate Evaluation accompanying SB-1459 notes provisional license applicant may acquire a license with out proof of full CEQA compliance.
SB-1459, if handed, would stay in impact solely till January 1, 2020. This could each present a further 12 months of respiration room for already swamped regulators and would forestall hashish companies from probably having to stop operations. Not surprisingly, quite a few public our bodies, personal entities, and business teams (together with our California hashish enterprise legal professionals) have supported the invoice. Barring unexpected circumstances, it’s a protected guess that SB-1459 will turn out to be regulation.