2018 Legislation

The state legislature continues to lead on cannabis policy reform. In 2018 CalGrowers tracked more than 100 pieces of legislation. Nine CGA sponsored or supported bills were successfully signed into law by the end of session, while several others were vetoed or held in legislative committee. Many bills which were not signed into law will continue to be CGA priorities under the new governor's administration in 2019.

Working through a deliberative two-step process, our policy positions are clear and decided in a transparent and inclusive process. This process ensures we are accountable to our membership and our mission. All members are welcome to participate in the process.

2018 Legislation Signed by the Governor

AB 2020: Temporary Events: Any permitted location.

Allows temporary cannabis events to be held at any locally permitted venue. Previously, events could only be held at county fairgrounds or district agricultural associations.

SB 311: Commercial cannabis activity: licensed distributors

Allows a cannabis product to be transferred between licensed distributors after certified testing. Previously, a product could only be transported from a distributor to a retailer following testing. This legislation is effective immediately due to an urgency clause.

SB 1459: Cannabis: provisional license

Creates a new "provisional license" as a bridge between temporary and annual licenses. Provisional licenses are exempt from the CEQA findings that are required for annual licenses.

  • CGA Position: Support.

SB 1294: Cannabis: state and local equity programs.

Creates a state equity program that includes technical assistance and low-interest grants and loans.

  • CGA Position: Support.

AB 1793: Cannabis convictions.

Creates a process to automatically expunge or resentence prior cannabis convictions that have been reclassified by Prop 64. Previously, people seeking expungement or reclassification were required to initiate the process by filing an appeal.

SB 1409: Industrial Hemp

Streamlines hemp cultivation by removing the requirement that it be grown as a "fiber or oilseed crop" and removing the prohibition on pruning and culling.

  • CGA Position: Support.

AB 1741: Cannabis: taxation: electronic funds transfer.

Previously, monthly tax payments over $10,000 were subject to a penalty if they were paid in cash. This bill waives that penalty for licensed cannabis businesses.

AB 2402: Cannabis: personal information

Prohibits a cannabis licensee from disclosing a consumer's personal information to a third party.

AB 2899: Cannabis: advertisements

Prohibits advertising while a licensee's license is suspended.

  • CGA Position: Support.

2018 Legislation Vetoed by the Governor

SB 829: Compassionate Care Licenses

Would have created a new "compassionate care" license, available to M-licensees, for businesses that donate cannabis to patients for free. Donated cannabis would have been exempt from state taxes. The Governor's stated reason for the veto was that the legislation would have conflicted with the intent of Prop 64.

AB 1863: Tax deductions: 280E

Would have allowed cannabis businesses to deduct expenses on state taxes that would otherwise be prohibited by IRS Section 280E. The Governor's stated reason for the veto was that the legislation would have been costly and should have been negotiated through the budget process.

  • CGA Position: Support in concept.
  • Governor's veto message: Veto of AB 1863.

AB 2255: Distribution: deliveries: violations

Would have law enforcement procedures when interacting with cannabis distributors. The Governor's stated reason for the veto was that the issue should be addressed by the BCC in regulation, rather than in legislation.

AB 2980: Cannabis: premises: common space

Would have clarified that licensees may share common use areas such as a bathrooms, breakrooms, locker rooms, or hallways. The Governor's stated reason for the veto was that the issue should be addressed by the BCC in regulation, rather than in legislation.

  • Position: Support if amended to include commercial kitchens.
  • Governor's veto message: Veto of AB 2980.

2018 Legislation Held in Legislative Committee

AB 2641: Temporary Events: Producer Sales.

Would have allowed cultivators and manufacturers to sell their own products at permitted cannabis events. Instead, only licensed retailers are currently authorized to sell at cannabis events. The bill passed the Assembly but was held in Senate appropriations committee.

AB 3157: Tax reduction.

Would have decreased the state cannabis excise tax from 15% to 11% and waived the cultivation tax entirely until June 1, 2021. The bill was held in Assembly appropriations committee. However, CGA continues to support tax reform based on its tax platform.

  • Position: Support.
  • Related documents:
    • CalGrowers Tax Platform - key principles include a progressive cultivation tax based on size, and a tax waiver for cottage growers and medical cannabis.
    • Cumulative Tax Analysis - analyzes combined state and local taxes in California, and compares them to cumulative taxes in other states. Concludes that California taxes average around 39.5%, substantially higher than taxes in all other cannabis-legal states aside from Washington.

AB 924: Indian Tribes: commercial cannabis activity.

Would have authorized the Governor to enter into compacts with Indian tribes for commercial cannabis activity. The bill passed the Assembly but was held in Senate appropriations committee.

  • CGA Position: Support.

SB 930: Cannabis Banking

Would have created limited-charter state bank to accept cannabis-related cash and allow businesses to pay rent, other cannabis businesses, and state fees and taxes. The bill passed the Senate but was held in Assembly appropriations committee.

AB 2422: Anticoagulants (rodenticides).

Would have prohibited the use of certain anticoagulant rodenticides. The bill was held in Assembly policy committee.

AB 2555: Cannabis: mature plants.

Would have defined a mature plant at eighteen inches of height or width and required a UID to be affixed at that point. The bill passed the Assembly but was pulled from the Senate floor.

  • CGA Position: Oppose unless amended.

(Updated: October 2, 2018)