Earlier this month, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed several major pieces of cannabis-related legislation into law, while vetoing others.  Each is briefly summarized below, based on information provided by California Legislative Information.  If you have any questions about anything here, please feel free to contact a member of our team and we will be happy to assist.

In this blog post we will cover the following bills that were signed into law:

Also, the following vetoed bills:

The following bills passed and were signed into law:


    • What SB-51 does:
      • Until January 1, 2031, authorizes DCC to issue provisional licenses for local equity applicants for retailer activities if the applicants meet certain requirements.
      • Authorizes DCC to renew these licenses until it issues or denies the provisional licensee’s annual license or until five (5) years from the date the provisional license was originally issued (whichever is earlier).
      • Requires DCC to report to the appropriate legislative committees on certain related items (e.g., number of provisional licenses granted).


  • What SB-302 does:
    • Expands provisions of the Compassionate Access to Medical Cannabis Act to patients >65 years old with a chronic disease.
    • Expands the definition of “health care facility” to include a “home health agency,” with exceptions to certain provisions of the law carved out for said agencies.
    • Requires health care facilities permitting patient use of medicinal cannabis to ensure a denial of admission to the facility is not because of the patient’s use of medicinal cannabis.
    • Authorizes health care facilities to suspend compliance with these provisions if a regulatory agency, the United States Department of Justice, or the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services inquires about the facility’s activities.


    • What SB-540 does:
      • On or before July 1, 2025, requires DCC to reevaluate safety-warning regulations for cannabis/cannabis product labels/inserts to determine if any additional warnings are needed to reflect evolving science, and requires DCC to adopt regulations for labels/inserts reflecting that science regarding any consumer risk from cannabis use.
      • On or before January 1, 2030 (and every five (5) years thereafter), requires DCC to reevaluate adopted regulations to determine if requirements reflect the state of evolving science on cannabis health effects and on effective health-warning communication.
      • Authorizes cannabis/cannabis products manufactured before January 1, 2030 (and every proceeding year new labeling requirements are imposed), to be sold for up to twelve (12) months from the effective date of those regulations or for a shorter time as DCC prescribes.
  • Brochure:
        • On or before January 1, 2025, requires DCC (consulting with CDPH) to create/post for public use a single-page flat or folded brochure including certain prescribed info (e.g., certain implications and risks associated with cannabis use).
        • On and after March 1, 2025, requires retailers and microbusinesses selling (or a person delivering) cannabis/cannabis products to consumers to prominently display the brochure (including printed copies) at the point of sale or final delivery in person or online, and offer each new customer a copy at the time of first purchase or delivery.
        • On or before January 1, 2030 (and every five (5) years thereafter), requires DCC to either recertify the brochure information or provide updated language.


  • What SB-622 does
      • Updates the unique identification (UID) program for cannabis/cannabis products to have unique identifiers recorded in a manner determined by DCC (as opposed to attaching them at the base of each plant or as otherwise required by law).


  • What SB-700 does
      • Makes it unlawful for employers to request information from job applicants relating to the latter’s prior use of cannabis (except for building and construction work), with an exemption for information from one’s criminal history if authorized under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) or other state/federal law.


  • What SB-753 does
      • Persons 18+ years old who unlawfully plant, cultivate, harvest, dry, or process >6 living cannabis plants (or any part thereof) may be imprisoned if the offense results in intentionally or grossly negligently causing substantial environmental harm to surface or ground water, public lands, or other public resources.


  • What AB-1126 does
      • Makes possession of the universal cannabis symbol in connection with unlicensed commercial cannabis activity a violation, with each individual package, label, advertisement, or other symbol-bearing object a separate violation.
      • Requires persons using or possessing the symbol in connection with commercial activity to maintain and produce records that the use/possession relates to licensed commercial activity.
      • Makes a package, label, advertisement, or other symbol-bearing document/object contraband, required to be seized and summarily forfeited.
      • Authorizes persons from whom a package, label, advertisement, or other document/object is seized to petition for its return.
      • Makes an exception for educational, informational, or other noncommercial use/possession of the symbol.
      • Expands the places/items authorized for the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (CDTFA) or peace officers to inspect and seize to include any place where any package, label, advertisement, or other symbol-bearing document/object is sold or stored.


  • What AB-1171 does:
    • Authorizes licensees under the Medicinal and Adult Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MAUCRSA) to bring actions in superior court against persons engaging in state-unlicensed commercial cannabis activity, requiring licensees to demonstrate actual harm resulting from the unlicensed commercial cannabis activity in question.
    • Authorizes courts in those actions to enjoin defendants from engaging in unlicensed commercial cannabis activity, and entitles prevailing licensees to reasonable attorney’s fees and costs and either: (1) actual damages; or (2) statutory damages up to $75,000.
    • Does not apply to violations of the California Labor Code, and prohibits its provisions from forming the basis for a cause of action under the Labor Code Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA) of 2004.


  • What AB-1684 does:
    • Expands authorization for ordinances providing for immediate imposition of administrative fines or penalties to include all unlicensed commercial cannabis activity (including cultivation, manufacturing, processing, distribution, or retail sale of cannabis).
    • Authorizes ordinances to declare unlicensed commercial cannabis activity a public nuisance.
    • Prohibits ordinances from imposing immediate administrative fines or penalties exceeding $1,000 per violation or $10,000 per day, but does not limit the imposition of larger fines otherwise authorized by applicable law or administrative fines/penalties imposed after notice and a reasonable time to correct.
    • Authorizes ordinances to impose administrative fines or penalties on property owners and each owner of occupant business entities engaging in unlicensed commercial cannabis activity, and to hold them jointly and severally liable.
    • Authorizes local agencies adopting ordinances authorized by this law to refer a case involving unlicensed commercial cannabis activity to the Attorney General. 

The following bills were vetoed and return to the Legislature, where 2/3 of each house must either vote to overturn each veto within sixty (60) days or else let it stand:


  • What AB-1207 would have done: 
    • Prohibit the sale, distribution, or manufacture of cannabis/cannabis products, packaging, or labeling that is “attractive to children,” and require the adoption of emergency regulations to implement its provisions.
  • Vetoed over
      • Concern the definition of “attractive to children” is overly broad and would “sweep in commonplace designs” and fail to meaningfully protect children beyond what existing law requires (see Governor’s veto message)


  • What AB-374 would have done: 
    • Authorize local jurisdictions to allow for: (1) preparation or sale of noncannabis food or beverage products (except those containing industrial hemp) by licensed retailers or microbusinesses in areas where cannabis consumption is allowed; (2) sale of prepackaged, noncannabis-infused, nonalcoholic food and beverages by licensed retailers; and (3) live musical or other performances on the premises of licensed retailers or microbusinesses in areas where cannabis consumption is allowed.
  • Vetoed over
      • Concern the bill could “undermine California’s long-standing smoke-free workplace protections” (see Governor’s veto message)


  • What SB-58 would have done:
    • On and after January 1, 2025, make lawful the possession, preparation, obtaining, or transportation of certain quantities of psilocybin, psilocyn, DMT, and mescaline for personal use by/with persons 21+ years old.
    • Provide penalties for possessing these substances on school grounds, or possession by/transferring to persons <21 years old.
    • Require the California Health and Human Services Agency to convene a workgroup to study/make recommendations on establishing a framework governing therapeutic use (including facilitated/supported use) of those substances, and report to the Legislature on or before January 1, 2025.
    • On and after January 1, 2025, make lawful the cultivation or transportation of certain quantities of spores or mycelium capable of producing mushrooms or other materials containing psilocybin or psilocyn for personal use by/with persons 21+ years old.
    • Exempt from prohibition paraphernalia related to the specific substances listed in the bill, and items used for testing/analyzing controlled substances.
    • Repeal provisions of existing law that state the intent of the Legislature that the messages and information provided by various state drug/alcohol programs promote no unlawful use of any drugs/alcohol.
  • Vetoed over


If you have any questions about any of the above, please feel free to contact Katchko, Vitiello & Karikomi, PC for more information and a member of the team will be happy to assist.

By Patrick Babajanian, October 12, 2023.

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