Last week we told you about the marijuana cultivation bans that are currently sweeping the state of California. We also told you that lawmakers were scrambling to fix the mistake that led to the bans in the first place.
It seems a deadline for cities and counties to decide whether they wanted to ban cultivation was accidently left in the recent medical marijuana regulation legislation passed in California, leaving jurisdictions with little choice but to enact bans before it was too late.
Last week the state legislature passed AB21, which fixes the error by removing the deadline. The Assembly passed the bill by a vote of 65 to 0 while the Senate passed it 35-3.
“My concern with the March 1 deadline was that these bans were happening without input from communities and stakeholders,” said Assemblyman Jim Wood (D), who authored AB21. The bill now awaits Governor Jerry Brown’s signature.
The situation has a lot of lessons to teach:
1) Make sure you read the bills that you’re passing. It seems like common sense, but less effort now usually leads to more work later.
2) The more complicated the regulations, the more problems that can arise. Piling regulation on top of regulation leads to conflict and confusion.
3) Growing is critical when it comes to legal cannabis, whether commercial or home, especially for patients who may only have that form of access to their medicine.
Many activists in the state were clamoring for more regulation, and now they have it. Whatever its advantages, more regulation always has drawbacks. Hopefully this one can be rectified and localities will have time to decide on their plans for marijuana cultivation, after getting input from everyone involved, especially patients.