Since the legalization of recreational cannabis in California’s Proposition 64, the entire marijuana industry is in a state of regulatory flux. It is still illegal, medicinally and recreationally, under federal law, but states can override federal authority by enacting their own laws. Even more complicated, cities can do the same. This is why some allow marijuana dispensaries and others do not, forcing some patients to travel.
Likewise, some cities make it legal to deliver cannabis to patients, under strict regulation, of course. A medical marijuana delivery service in Santa Monica must function within its laws. Dispensaries must have licenses to operate, and they may not neglect requirements for safety and quality. It is advisable to consult with legal counsel to ensure you follow all medical marijuana rules.
Medical Marijuana Laws in Santa Monica
When California introduced the Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act of 2015, it sought to control oversight of all cannabis regulation across the state, as explained by California Legislature. Cities opposed it, as they wanted regulatory authority of their own jurisdictions. Medical marijuana laws Santa Monica are unique to the city. Others adopted their own ordinances to align or oppose the state.
Every legitimate patient has the right to access medical-grade cannabis, provided it comes with a doctor’s recommendation. Registered caregivers may help patients, and dispensaries may only act as a place for them to meet each other and conduct their affairs. The law is complicated, but marijuana dispensaries in Santa Monica are safe if they adhere to these five rules:
1. Cooperatives and Collectives in Santa Monica
A medical marijuana dispensary in Santa Monica must operate as a non-profit “cooperative” or “collective.” Although some are partnerships, sole proprietors, or profit generating businesses, both the Attorney General’s guidelines and Senate Bill 420 expressly forbid these arrangements. Collectives must incorporate with the state and comply with the Food and Agriculture Code.
A business attorney will be able to help set up prospective cooperatives. To qualify as a non-profit, the collective may only facilitate collaboration between patients and caregivers, including expenses and revenues. Cooperatives may not transact with non-members. In fact, they may not transact at all. They simply coordinate dealings between members. Only patients and caregivers may use the collective.
2. Primary Caregivers in Santa Monica
Patients in Santa Monica may choose their own primary caregivers. These folk are responsible for looking after them and supplying their medical marijuana. A patient may only designate one caregiver, but he or she may have several others under care. Although caregivers may cultivate enough for their wards, they must belong to a collective if they need to purchase or distribute it.
Any medical marijuana dispensary in Santa Monica will face legal woes if it provides cannabis to anyone other than patients and caregivers in its collective. For this reason, anyone using a dispensary must provide his or her Medical Marijuana Card. If a person does not have one, then the cooperative may not supply him or her with cannabis.
3. Marijuana Delivery Service in Santa Monica
Many legitimate medical patients are unable to grow their own cannabis. Some lack transport or are no longer able to drive. For this reason, Santa Monica allows medical marijuana delivery services by the non-profit collectives or cooperatives involved. Members should manage it themselves and not leave it to a single entity. Patients can order delivery only through their medical cannabis networks.
4. Medical Marijuana Cultivation in Santa Monica
Under Proposition 215, patients and caregivers may cultivate and possess as much marijuana as needed for treatment. Those that cannot or prefer not to may utilize medical dispensaries. However, collectives may not grow huge gardens. In fact, there is a 99-plant limit on all dispensaries in Santa Monica. Anything larger may attract federal persecution.
5. Cannabis Concentrates in Santa Monica
Medical cannabis edibles and tinctures are only legal if members of the collective make them and distribute them solely among other members. Cooks must be patients themselves and may only share their products with other patients or caregivers. The dispensary’s only responsibility is providing members with a portal to interact with each other.
If you plan to stock edibles, tinctures, and other concentrates, then you will need a food handler’s license. Santa Monica has regulations in place to monitor labelling, dosage instructions, testing, and more. Medical marijuana dispensaries must comply with changing city and state laws regarding cannabis concentrates, but for now go for licensing, get compliant, and adhere to all the rules.
If you are a patient looking for a quality medical marijuana dispensary in Santa Monica, then research all of them beforehand. Make sure they operate within the law. If you wish to open your own cannabis business, then you should set up a business plan, convince investors to fund your idea, consult with a business attorney, and keep up to date with continually evolving city, state and federal regulations.