Business Attorneys discuss legalized marijuana and its implications

Questions continue to spiral in California following the passage last November of Proposition 64, which generally legalized non-medical, recreational marijuana. The Adult Use of Marijuana Act (“AUMA”) does not allow businesses to grow, distribute, or sell non-medical, recreational marijuana until they get a state license. State issuance of such licenses won’t begin until 2018. In the meantime, is it ok to grow marijuana at home?

Home Cultivation is OK, With Some Limitations

Home cultivation is generally ok under the new law. California residents (who are 21 years old or older) can grow – without the need to obtain a license – up to six living marijuana plants indoors in a private residence that you own (e.g., home, apartment unit, mobile home, or other similar dwelling), subject to local laws relating to public health and safety. Those who want to grow marijuana at home should be aware of additional issues, such as the following:

•  Indoor cultivation can include plants grown within a greenhouse, so long as the structure is fully enclosed, secure, and not visible from a public space

•  Any marijuana produced in excess of 28.5 grams must be kept in a locked space not visible from a public place

•  Tenants may grow marijuana under the same conditions as owners, but a landlord does have the right to ban indoor cultivation of non-medical, recreational marijuana on the leased premises

•  Cities and counties may reasonably regulate indoor cultivation inside a private residence to reduce potential health and safety risks

•  Cities and counties may completely ban outdoor cultivation

Is a Hodge Podge of Local Regulation Ahead?

In spite of the fact that the AUMA legalizes recreational marijuana on a statewide basis, some Golden State residents are worried that they will become subjected to a hodge podge of local regulations. For example, according to one recent report, Montebello, Aliso Viejo, Fontana, Indian Wells, San Jacinto, and San Juan Capistrano have already approved laws regulating marijuana cultivation in their cities.

Some cities and towns may want to cash in on home grown marijuana with licensing fees. For example, Montebello’s ordinance requires a $249 fee for a permit to grow marijuana plants within a residence. Other municipalities claim they have safety issues in mind. For example, Whittier city council members have asked the city’s staff to draft an ordinance prohibiting marijuana home cultivation inside homes with small children.

Some proponents of Prop 64 are crying foul. They argue that the idea behind both the proposition and AUMA is to allow cultivation of up to six marijuana plants without restrictions, just as homeowners have the right to grow tomatoes or strawberries.

CKB VIENNA LLP – Experienced Commercial Law Attorneys and Advisors

Many individuals and businesses are intrigued by California’s roll-out of legalized recreational marijuana. They are concerned with the barriers and hurdles that lie ahead, particularly when it comes to taking commercial advantage of Prop 64. Navigating through a sea of regulations can be difficult. Prudent business owners turn to experienced commercial attorneys like CKB VIENNA LLP for assistance. For years now, we have represented all sorts of businesses in many types of legal and regulatory environments. We have researched the technical requirements of Prop 64 and the myriad of other regulations that will have an impact on the sale of recreational marijuana in California. Our team understands the complexity of the issues and stands ready to represent you aggressively. We have offices in Rancho Cucamonga, San Bernardino, and Los Angeles. Contact us by telephone at 909.980.1040 or complete our online form.