Legal Weed: 10 Bills Go Before California Lawmakers

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California lawmakers will have their hands full with 10 cannabis bills slated for hearings for the week of August 13, 2018. The Legislature will hear bills affecting cannabis tax law, sale to minors, and cannabis licensing equity, among other issues. Here, we’ve assembled a list of all the bills on the legislative calendar in Sacramento.

AB 1744 — After-school Programs

AB 1744 proposes to use cannabis tax revenue to fund After-School Education and Safety Programs. Participating public schools would receive grants to operate before and after school programs serving students in kindergarten to ninth grade. To receive funding, programs are required to provide youth development activities that prevent and reduce substance use and improve attendance and performance. AB 1744 was placed in the suspense file Aug. 6, 2018. The bill has been scheduled for its first suspense file hearing before the Senate Appropriations Committee on Thursday, Aug.16, 2018.

The suspense file is a holding placing for any bill with an annual cost to the state greater than $150,000. Bills are held in the suspense file before the fiscal deadline to offer each legislative chamber time to allocate funds. Bills that are moved out of the suspense file go to the floor for a final reading and vote, while bills held in suspense die.\

AB 1793 — Resentencing for Cannabis Convictions

AB 1793 would mandate the California Department of Justice (DOJ) to review all cannabis-related convictions that could potentially be eligible for resentencing, recall, or dismissal of the sentence, and sealing or redesignation under Proposition 64, before July 1, 2019. The bill would require the court to automatically reduce or dismiss the conviction if there is no challenge by July 1, 2020. AB 1793 was placed in the suspense file Aug. 6, 2018. The bill has been scheduled for a suspense file hearing, Thursday, Aug. 16, 2018, by the Senate Appropriations Committee.

AB 1863 — Personal Income Tax Deductions

AB 1863 would allow Medicinal and Adult-Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MAUCRSA) licensed cannabis businesses to deduct business expenses under the Personal Income Tax Law. If passed, the bill would go into effect immediately as a tax levy. AB 1863 was scheduled for a hearing Monday, Aug. 13, 2018, before the Senate Appropriations Committee.

AB 2641 — Temporary Event Licenses for Sales

AB 2641 would allow the Bureau of Cannabis Control (BCC) to issue a temporary cannabis license to allow retailers and microbusinesses to make onsite sales of cannabis goods at cannabis events. The bill would require an application to be sent to the BCC, including a list of all licensed participating business and authorizations issued by the local jurisdiction that enables listed licensees to conduct commercial cannabis activity. AB 2641 was scheduled for a hearing Thursday, Aug. 16, 2018, before the Senate Appropriations Committee.

AB 924 — Commercial Cannabis Regulation on Native American Tribal Lands

AB 924 would establish the Cannabis Regulatory Enforcement Act for Tribal Entities (CREATE). The CREATE Act would require a Native American tribe entering into a tribal cannabis regulatory agreement with the governor to establish a tribal cannabis regulatory commission or agency in accordance with the tribe’s established governmental process. All tribal cannabis regulatory agreements and subsequent tribal commissions and agencies must be approved by the Legislature. A hearing for AB 924 was scheduled for Monday, Aug.13, 2018, before the Senate Appropriations Committee.

SB 1294 — State and Local Equity Programs

SB 1294 would require the BCC to provide reduced or waived state licensing fees and other assistance to local equity applicants and licensees as well as and to develop a model local equity program and a model local equity ordinance. SB 1294 was scheduled for Wednesday Aug.15, 2018, before the Assembly Appropriations Committee.

SB 1451 — Underage Sales

SB 1451 would suspend or revoke the license of a retailer or microbusiness that sells or provides cannabis or marijuana products to minors on its premises. SB 1451 was scheduled for Wednesday Aug.15, 2018, before the Assembly Appropriations Committee.

SB 829 — Compassionate-care Licenses

SB 829 would allow the BCC to establish a compassionate-care license for donors of medicinal cannabis products to qualified patients who possess a physician’s recommendation. The bill would also limit tax collections on those medical cannabis and medicinal cannabis products as specified. SB 829 was scheduled for a hearing Thursday, Aug. 16, 2018, before the Assembly Appropriations Committee.   

SB 930 — State-chartered Financial Institutions for Cannabis

SB 930 would create a state charter for privately financed banks and credit unions for the purpose of offering banking services to licensed cannabis businesses. This bill would authorize cannabis limited charter banks and credit unions to issue account holders special-purpose checks. The program would also create the Cannabis Limited Charter Bank and Credit Union Advisory Board to include the treasurer, the controller, and the chief of the BCC as policy directors. A hearing for SB 930 was scheduled for Thursday, Aug. 16, 2018, before the Assembly Appropriations Committee.

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