Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act
The effect of this Assembly Bill is to regulate the production and distribution of marijuana and marijuana products for medical use in California. [And, in the process, AB266 eliminates all criminal defenses from SB 420 collectives, meaning no growing for other patients, no sharing more than an ounce (misdemeanor) and no sales (wobbler) allowed between patients without a state and local license license.]
This measure eliminates all criminal defenses held by members of SB 420 collectives, meaning no more growing for other patients (felony) and no sharing (misdemeanor) or sales (felony) between patients without a state and local license license.
- License Classifications
- State/Local Enforcement Balance
- Licensed Activity Lawful
- Unlicensed Activity Unlawful
- Medical Marijuana Regulation
- License Combinations Permitted
- Employer Workplace Policies
- Retail and Transport
- Manufacturers and Laboratories
- Agency Transparency
- Patient Privacy
Assembly Bill No. 266 • CHAPTER 689
LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL’S DIGEST
(5) The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
The people of the State of California do enact as follows:
Section 27 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:
(a) Each entity specified in subdivisions (c), (d), and (e) shall provide on the Internet information regarding the status of every license issued by that entity in accordance with the California Public Records Act (Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 6250) of Division 7 of Title 1 of the Government Code) and the Information Practices Act of 1977 (Chapter 1 (commencing with Section 1798) of Title 1.8 of Part 4 of Division 3 of the Civil Code). The public information to be provided on the Internet shall include information on suspensions and revocations of licenses issued by the entity and other related enforcement action, including accusations filed pursuant to the Administrative Procedure Act (Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 11340) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code) taken by the entity relative to persons, businesses, or facilities subject to licensure or regulation by the entity. The information may not include personal information, including home telephone number, date of birth, or social security number. Each entity shall disclose a licensee’s address of record. However, each entity shall allow a licensee to provide a post office box number or other alternate address, instead of his or her home address, as the address of record. This section shall not preclude an entity from also requiring a licensee, who has provided a post office box number or other alternative mailing address as his or her address of record, to provide a physical business address or residence address only for the entity’s internal administrative use and not for disclosure as the licensee’s address of record or disclosure on the Internet.
Section 101 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:
The department is comprised of the following:
Section 205.1 is added to the Business and Professions Code, to read:
Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 19300) is added to Division 8 of the Business and Professions Code, to read:
CHAPTER 3.5. Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety act
Article 1. Definitions
This act shall be known and may be cited as the Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act.
For purposes of this chapter, the following definitions shall apply:
License classifications pursuant to this chapter are as follows:
Article 2. Administration
There is in the Department of Consumer Affairs the Bureau of Medical Marijuana Regulation, under the supervision and control of the director. The director shall administer and enforce the provisions of this chapter.
Protection of the public shall be the highest priority for the bureau in exercising its licensing, regulatory, and disciplinary functions under this chapter. Whenever the protection of the public is inconsistent with other interests sought to be promoted, the protection of the public shall be paramount.
The bureau shall make and prescribe reasonable rules as may be necessary or proper to carry out the purposes and intent of this chapter and to enable it to exercise the powers and duties conferred upon it by this chapter, not inconsistent with any statute of this state, including particularly this chapter and Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 11340) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code. For the performance of its duties, the bureau has the power conferred by Sections 11180 to 11191, inclusive, of the Government Code.
Notice of any action of the licensing authority required by this chapter to be given may be signed and given by the director or an authorized employee of the department and may be made personally or in the manner prescribed by Section 1013 of the Code of Civil Procedure.
(a) The bureau may convene an advisory committee to advise the bureau and licensing authorities on the development of standards and regulations pursuant to this chapter, including best practices and guidelines to ensure qualified patients have adequate access to medical cannabis and medical cannabis products. The advisory committee members shall be determined by the chief.
A licensing authority may make or cause to be made such investigation as it deems necessary to carry out its duties under this chapter.
For any hearing held pursuant to this chapter, the director, or a licensing authority, may delegate the power to hear and decide to an administrative law judge. Any hearing before an administrative law judge shall be pursuant to the procedures, rules, and limitations prescribed in Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 11500) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code.
In any hearing before a licensing authority pursuant to this chapter, the licensing authority may pay any person appearing as a witness at the hearing at the request of the licensing authority pursuant to a subpoena, his or her actual, necessary, and reasonable travel, food, and lodging expenses, not to exceed the amount authorized for state employees.
Article 3. Enforcement
Grounds for disciplinary action include:
Each licensing authority may suspend or revoke licenses, after proper notice and hearing to the licensee, if the licensee is found to have committed any of the acts or omissions constituting grounds for disciplinary action. The disciplinary proceedings under this chapter shall be conducted in accordance with Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 11500) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code, and the director of each licensing authority shall have all the powers granted therein.
Each licensing authority may take disciplinary action against a licensee for any violation of this chapter when the violation was committed by the licensee’s agent or employee while acting on behalf of the licensee or engaged in commercial cannabis activity.
Upon suspension or revocation of a license, the licensing authority shall inform the bureau. The bureau shall then inform all other licensing authorities and the Department of Food and Agriculture.
All accusations against licensees shall be filed by the licensing authority within five years after the performance of the act or omission alleged as the ground for disciplinary action; provided, however, that the foregoing provision shall not constitute a defense to an accusation alleging fraud or misrepresentation as a ground for disciplinary action. The cause for disciplinary action in such case shall not be deemed to have accrued until discovery, by the licensing authority, of the facts constituting the fraud or misrepresentation, and, in such case, the accusation shall be filed within five years after such discovery.
(a) Nothing in this chapter shall be interpreted to supersede or limit existing local authority for law enforcement activity, enforcement of local zoning requirements or local ordinances, or enforcement of local permit or licensing requirements.
(a) Pursuant to Section 7 of Article XI of the California Constitution, a city, county, or city and county may adopt ordinances that establish additional standards, requirements, and regulations for local licenses and permits for commercial cannabis activity. Any standards, requirements, and regulations regarding health and safety, testing, security, and worker protections established by the state shall be the minimum standards for all licensees statewide.
(a) The actions of a licensee, its employees, and its agents that are (1) permitted pursuant to both a state license and a license or permit issued by the local jurisdiction following the requirements of the applicable local ordinances, and (2) conducted in accordance with the requirements of this chapter and regulations adopted pursuant to this chapter, are not unlawful under state law and shall not be an offense subject to arrest, prosecution, or other sanction under state law, or be subject to a civil fine or be a basis for seizure or forfeiture of assets under state law.
(a) A person engaging in commercial cannabis activity without a license required by this chapter shall be subject to civil penalties of up to twice the amount of the license fee for each violation, and the court may order the destruction of medical cannabis associated with that violation in accordance with Section 11479 of the Health and Safety Code. Each day of operation shall constitute a separate violation of this section. All civil penalties imposed and collected pursuant to this section by a licensing authority shall be deposited into the Medical Cannabis Fines and Penalties Account established pursuant to Section 19351.
Article 4. Licensing
(a) Licensing authorities administering this chapter may issue state licenses only to qualified applicants engaging in commercial cannabis activity pursuant to this chapter. Upon the date of implementation of regulations by the licensing authority, no person shall engage in commercial cannabis activity without possessing both a state license and a local permit, license, or other authorization. A licensee shall not commence activity under the authority of a state license until the applicant has obtained, in addition to the state license, a license or permit from the local jurisdiction in which he or she proposes to operate, following the requirements of the applicable local ordinance.
(a) The Department of Consumer Affairs, the Department of Food and Agriculture, and the State Department of Public Health shall promulgate regulations for implementation of their respective responsibilities in the administration of this chapter.
Article 5. Medical Marijuana Regulation
(a) A person other than a licensed transporter shall not transport medical cannabis or medical cannabis products from one licensee to another licensee, unless otherwise specified in this chapter.
(a) A licensee shall keep accurate records of commercial cannabis activity.
(a) A licensee may only hold a state license in up to two separate license categories, as follows:
This chapter and Article 2 (commencing with Section 11357) and Article 2.5 (commencing with Section 11362.7) of Chapter 6 of Division 10 of the Health and Safety Code shall not interfere with an employer’s rights and obligations to maintain a drug and alcohol free workplace or require an employer to permit or accommodate the use, consumption, possession, transfer, display, transportation, sale, or growth of cannabis in the workplace or affect the ability of employers to have policies prohibiting the use of cannabis by employees and prospective employees, or prevent employers from complying with state or federal law.
Article 7. Licensed Distributors, Dispensaries, and Transporters
(a) State licenses to be issued by the Department of Consumer Affairs are as follows:
Article 9. Delivery
(a) Deliveries, as defined in this chapter, can only be made by a dispensary and in a city, county, or city and county that does not explicitly prohibit it by local ordinance.
Article 10. Licensed Manufacturers and Licensed Laboratories
The State Department of Public Health shall promulgate regulations governing the licensing of cannabis manufacturers and testing laboratories. Licenses to be issued are as follows:
(a) For the purposes of testing medical cannabis or medical cannabis products, licensees shall use a licensed testing laboratory that has adopted a standard operating procedure using methods consistent with general requirements for the competence of testing and calibration activities, including sampling, using standard methods established by the International Organization for Standardization, specifically ISO/IEC 17020 and ISO/IEC 17025 to test medical cannabis and medical cannabis products that are approved by an accrediting body that is a signatory to the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation Mutual Recognition Arrangement.
A licensed testing laboratory shall not handle, test, or analyze medical cannabis or medical cannabis products unless the licensed testing laboratory meets all of the following:
(a) A licensed testing laboratory shall issue a certificate of analysis for each lot, with supporting data, to report both of the following:
(a) Except as provided in this chapter, a licensed testing laboratory shall not acquire or receive medical cannabis or medical cannabis products except from a licensed facility in accordance with this chapter, and shall not distribute, sell, deliver, transfer, transport, or dispense medical cannabis or medical cannabis products, from which the medical cannabis or medical cannabis products were acquired or received. All transfer or transportation shall be performed pursuant to a specified chain of custody protocol.
(a) Prior to delivery or sale at a dispensary, medical cannabis products shall be labeled and in a tamper-evident package. Labels and packages of medical cannabis products shall meet the following requirements:
Article 14. Reporting
Beginning on March 1, 2023, and on or before March 1 of each following year, each licensing authority shall prepare and submit to the Legislature an annual report on the authority’s activities and post the report on the authority’s Internet Web site. The report shall include, but not be limited to, the following information for the previous fiscal year:
Article 15. Privacy
(a) Information identifying the names of patients, their medical conditions, or the names of their primary caregivers received and contained in records kept by the office or licensing authorities for the purposes of administering this chapter are confidential and shall not be disclosed pursuant to the California Public Records Act (Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 6250) of Division 7 of Title 1 of the Government Code), except as necessary for authorized employees of the State of California or any city, county, or city and county to perform official duties pursuant to this chapter, or a local ordinance.
Section 9147.7 of the Government Code is amended to read:
(a) For the purpose of this section, “eligible agency” means any agency, authority, board, bureau, commission, conservancy, council, department, division, or office of state government, however denominated, excluding an agency that is constitutionally created or an agency related to postsecondary education, for which a date for repeal has been established by statute on or after January 1, 2011.
Section 11362.775 of the Health and Safety Code is amended to read:
(a) Subject to subdivision (b), qualified patients, persons with valid identification cards, and the designated primary caregivers of qualified patients and persons with identification cards, who associate within the State of California in order collectively or cooperatively to cultivate cannabis for medical purposes, shall not solely on the basis of that fact be subject to state criminal sanctions under Section 11357, 11358, 11359, 11360, 11366, 11366.5, or 11570.
Section 147.5 is added to the Labor Code, to read:
(a) By January 1, 2017, the Division of Occupational Safety and Health shall convene an advisory committee to evaluate whether there is a need to develop industry-specific regulations related to the activities of facilities issued a license pursuant to Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 19300) of Division 8 of the Business and Professions Code.
Section 31020 is added to the Revenue and Taxation Code, to read:
The board, in consultation with the Department of Food and Agriculture, shall adopt a system for reporting the movement of commercial cannabis and cannabis products throughout the distribution chain. The system shall not be duplicative of the electronic database administered by the Department of Food and Agriculture specified in Section 19335 of the Business and Professions Code. The system shall also employ secure packaging and be capable of providing information to the board. This system shall capture, at a minimum, all of the following:
The provisions of this act are severable. If any provision of this act or its application is held invalid, that invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications that can be given effect without the invalid provision or application.
The Legislature finds and declares that Section 4 of this act, which adds Section 19355 to the Business and Professions Code, thereby imposes a limitation on the public’s right of access to the meetings of public bodies or the writings of public officials and agencies within the meaning of Section 3 of Article I of the California Constitution. Pursuant to that constitutional provision, the Legislature makes the following findings to demonstrate the interest protected by this limitation and the need for protecting that interest:
If the Commission on State Mandates determines that this act contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement to local agencies and school districts for those costs shall be made pursuant to Part 7 (commencing with Section 17500) of Division 4 of Title 2 of the Government Code.
This act shall become operative only if Senate Bill 643 and Assembly Bill 243 of the 2015–16 Regular Session are also enacted and become operative.