How To Open a Dispensary in California

How To Open a Dispensary

How To Open a Dispensary in California

Marijuana is one of those hot bed issues that has kept politicians screaming for years. Some are for the legalization of Marijuana, but most are not. In 1996, a new voice was heard: that of the seriously ill person whose suffering would be alleviated by using Marijuana. That voice was loud enough to have California’s state government to pass the California Compassionate Use Act of 1996, which protects seriously ill patients and their primary caregivers from prosecution of possessing and cultivating Marijuana.

While this law helped a little, it left a large gray area as to how cultivating Marijuana would take place. The law does allow room for dispensaries to be established in order to meet the needs of those who are gravely ill. However, anyone who is trying to open a dispensary in California has to navigate through a minefield of restrictions in order to accomplish this. These issues have many people wondering exactly how to open a dispensary in California. The first main step is to open a collective or cooperative.

There are several tricky parts to starting a collective, the first of which is location. It may come as a shock to many but majorities of California communities do not want a dispensary within their borders. Anyone who is wondering how to open a dispensary in California needs to address this first. The best way to start is by researching which communities have ordinances concerning collectives. Here are some cities with ordinances concerning California.

Citrus Heights
Diamond Bar
Los Angeles
Palm Springs
San Francisco
San Jose

Keep two things in mind when choosing a location: a dispensary is not allowed to operate within 600 feet of a school (per state regulation) and certain municipalities have put a cap as to how many dispensaries are allowed to operate within their borders.

The second thing to do is to deal with the legalities, which will require a business attorney. By law, collectives must have nonprofit status. Since the marijuana that is cultivated is being used medicinally, it would make sense that those involved would not be out to make a profit. The only ones allowed to possess Marijuana are the patients or the primary caregivers Many patients and caregivers usually come together to form these collectives.

Since the crop cannot be sold, many collectives charge a membership fee or a gardening fee where a patient is allocated so much of the garden to grow their medicine for a fee. Probably the most important part to be aware of are the guidelines concerning possession. California law allows for the possession of 6 mature plants, 12 immature plants, and 8 ounces of Marijuana, per patient. While these are the state regulations other municipalities may have their own ordinances governing possession (San Francisco allows for 99 plants for the entire collective regardless of how many patients are a part of the collective).

It should be obvious that setting up a dispensary is extremely difficult. Anyone attempting to set up a dispensary will need to be aware of the very stringent laws concerning dispensaries. Enter your information below for our free step by step guide on how to open a dispensary in California.

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