Today's Law As Amended


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SB-59 Cannabis provisional licenses: local equity applicants.(2021-2022)



As Amends the Law Today


SECTION 1.
 This act shall be known as the California Legacy Cannabis Preservation and Equity Act of 2021.
SEC. 2.
 The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(a) This act intends to keep compliant cannabis businesses in California’s legal cannabis marketplace and deter unlicensed market activity.
(b) Compliant cannabis businesses have contributed to the state’s economy creating jobs, boosting economic development, and generating substantial state and local tax revenue.
(c) Stability in the cannabis marketplace is a vital component of an effective permanent state licensing program.
(d) The provisional licensed program has provided a legal path for California’s legacy cannabis businesses to continue operations while ensuring those businesses achieve compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act.
(e) With almost 80 percent of all licenses under provisional status, it is vital that the provisional program continue for these existing businesses in the licensed system while they continue to undergo environmental review.
(f) It is equally vital that the provisional program be extended in a manner that ensures a meaningful and immediate pathway to licensure for equity applicants in disadvantaged communities.

SECTION 1.SEC. 3.

 Section 26050.2 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

26050.2.
 (a) (1) Subject  Until June 30, 2022, except as provided in paragraphs (3) and (4), the department   to subdivision (i), a licensing authority  may, in its sole discretion, issue a provisional license to an applicant if the applicant has submitted a completed license application to the department,  licensing authority,  including the following, if applicable:
(A) (1)  If compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act (Division 13 (commencing with Section 21000) of the Public Resources Code) is not complete, evidence that compliance is underway.
(B) (2)  If compliance with local ordinances enacted pursuant to Section 26200 is not complete, evidence that compliance is underway.
(C) Compliance with paragraphs (5) and (11) of subdivision (a) of Section 26051.5.
(D) For a license application that includes cultivation activities, any of the following documents:
(i) A final streambed alteration agreement.
(ii) A draft streambed alteration agreement provided by the Department of Fish and Wildlife and signed and returned to the Department of Fish and Wildlife.
(iii) Written verification by the Department of Fish and Wildlife that a streambed alteration agreement is not needed.
(iv) Written verification by the Department of Fish and Wildlife that the applicant has submitted a notification described in Section 1602 of the Fish and Game Code, submitted payment of applicable fees pursuant to Section 1609 of the Fish and Game Code, and is responsive to the Department of Fish and Wildlife. For purposes of this subparagraph, an applicant is not responsive to the Department of Fish and Wildlife if either of the following apply:
(I) The notification has been deemed incomplete a second time.
(II) After a notification has been deemed incomplete once, the Department of Fish and Wildlife has not received requested information from the applicant for more than 60 days.
(E) The application is submitted to the department on or before March 31, 2022.
(2) If an application for a cultivation license is submitted on or after January 1, 2022, the department shall not issue a provisional license pursuant to this section if issuing the provisional license would cause a licensee to hold multiple cultivation licenses on contiguous premises to exceed one acre of total canopy for outdoor cultivation, or 22,000 square feet for mixed-light or indoor cultivation.
(3) Until June 30, 2023, the department may, in its sole discretion, issue a provisional license for a local equity license application, provided that the applicant meets the following requirements:
(A) The local equity applicant is not a cultivation license applicant for a premises that exceeds one acre of total canopy for outdoor cultivation, or 22,000 square feet for mixed-light or indoor cultivation.
(B) Issuing the license would not cause the applicant to hold multiple cultivation licenses on contiguous premises to exceed one acre of total canopy for outdoor cultivation, or 22,000 square feet for mixed-light or indoor cultivation.
(C) The local equity applicant satisfies all of the requirements in subparagraphs (A) to (D), inclusive, of paragraph (1).
(D) The local equity applicant submits an application to the department on or before March 31, 2023.
(4) Until September 30, 2022, the department may, in its sole discretion, issue a provisional license to a cultivation license applicant, provided that the applicant meets the following requirements:
(A) The applicant is not a cultivation license applicant for a premises that exceeds 20,000 square feet of total canopy for outdoor cultivation.
(B) Issuing the license would not cause the applicant to hold multiple cultivation licenses on contiguous premises to exceed one acre of total canopy for outdoor cultivation, or 22,000 square feet for mixed-light or indoor cultivation.
(C) The cultivation license applicant satisfies all of the requirements in subparagraphs (A) to (D), inclusive, of paragraph (1).
(D) The cultivation license applicant submits an application to the department on or before June 30, 2022.
(b) A provisional license issued pursuant to this section shall be valid for no more than 12 months from the date it was issued or renewed.  issued.  If the department  licensing authority  issues or renews a provisional license, it they  shall include the outstanding items needed to qualify for an annual license specific to the licensee.
(c) The department  A licensing authority  may, in its sole discretion, renew a provisional license until it  the licensing authority  issues or denies the provisional licensee’s annual license, subject to the requirements of this section. license. 
(d) For a renewal of a provisional license beginning July 1, 2022, through June 30, 2023, the department shall not renew a provisional license unless the following criteria are met:
(1) For cultivation licenses, to illustrate progress with compliance with Chapter 6 (commencing with Section 1600) of Division 2 of the Fish and Game Code, one of the following documents:
(A) A final streambed alteration agreement issued by the Department of Fish and Wildlife.
(B) A draft streambed alteration agreement provided by the Department of Fish and Wildlife and signed and returned to the Department of Fish and Wildlife by the provisional licensee.
(C) Written verification by the Department of Fish and Wildlife that the provisional licensee has submitted a complete notification described in Section 1602 of the Fish and Game Code.
(D) Written verification by the Department of Fish and Wildlife that a streambed alteration agreement is not needed.
(2) If compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act (Division 13 (commencing with Section 21000) of the Public Resources Code) is not yet complete, a determination from the department that one of the following requirements has been met:
(A) The lead agency is in the process of preparing a site-specific initial study, addendum, or checklist pursuant to Section 15063, 15164, 15168, or 15183 of Title 14 of the California Code of Regulations to demonstrate whether it is consistent with a previously circulated and adopted negative declaration, mitigated negative declaration, or environmental impact report.
(B) If a local jurisdiction is the lead agency, the lead agency has made substantial progress during the previous 12-month licensure term toward completing project-specific environmental review by drafting, preparing, or circulating for public review an environmental document pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act (Division 13 (commencing with Section 21000) of the Public Resources Code).
(C) If the department is the lead agency, information requested by the department of the provisional licensee that demonstrates the furtherance of environmental review.
(D) Information submitted to the department by the provisional licensee applicant that demonstrates evidence of substantial progress toward compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act (Division 13 (commencing with Section 21000) of the Public Resources Code) during the previous 12-month licensure term.
(e) On or after July 1, 2023, the department shall not renew a provisional license unless the following criteria are met:
(1) For cultivation licenses, to illustrate progress with compliance with Chapter 6 (commencing with Section 1600) of Division 2 of the Fish and Game Code, one of the following documents:
(A) A final streambed alteration agreement issued by the Department of Fish and Wildlife.
(B) A draft streambed alteration agreement provided by the Department of Fish and Wildlife and signed and returned to the Department of Fish and Wildlife by the provisional licensee.
(C) Written verification from the Department of Fish and Wildlife that a streambed alteration agreement is not needed.
(2) If compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act (Division 13 (commencing with Section 21000) of the Public Resources Code) is not yet complete, to illustrate progress with compliance, a determination from the department that one of the following has been met:
(A) The lead agency for the license has prepared and circulated for public review a negative declaration or a mitigated negative declaration.
(B) The lead agency for the license has determined that an environmental impact report is required pursuant to Section 21157 of the Public Resources Code and has either made substantial progress in preparing that environmental impact report or has a contract or contracts with consultants in place for the preparation of that environmental impact report.
(C) The lead agency has certified to the department that it has conducted a reasonably comprehensive site-specific review and has reviewed, prepared, and deemed complete an initial study, addendum, or checklist pursuant to Section 15063, 15164, 15168, or 15183 of Title 14 of the California Code of Regulations, which demonstrates consistency with a previously circulated and adopted negative declaration, mitigated negative declaration, or environmental impact report, in preparation for approval of an annual license.
(D) The lead agency for the license has reviewed, prepared, and deemed complete a notice of exemption pursuant to Section 21108 or 21152 of the Public Resources Code, except for ministerial projects not subject to the California Environmental Quality Act pursuant to paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 21080 of the Public Resources Code.
(f) A provisional license authorizing cultivation activities shall not be renewed if the department is notified of either or both of the following:
(1) The State Water Resources Control Board has notified the department that the provisional licensee is not in compliance with subdivision (a) or (b) of Section 26060.1 or the principles, guidelines, and requirements established pursuant to Section 13149 of the Water Code.
(2) The Department of Fish and Wildlife has notified the department that the provisional licensee is not in compliance with any final streambed alteration agreement, any conditions set forth in a signed draft streambed alteration agreement, or a condition established pursuant to subdivision (a) or paragraphs (1) and (2) of subdivision (b) of Section 26060.1.
(g) (1) After January 1, 2023, the department shall not renew a license pursuant to this section for cultivation activities if renewing the license would cause a licensee to hold multiple cultivation licenses on contiguous premises to exceed one acre of total canopy for outdoor cultivation or 22,000 square feet for mixed-light or indoor cultivation.
(2) After January 1, 2024, no provisional license that causes a licensee to hold multiple cultivation licenses on contiguous premises to exceed one acre of total canopy for outdoor cultivation or 22,000 square feet for mixed-light or indoor cultivation shall be in effect.
(h) The department, in its sole discretion, may allow a provisional licensee to move locations after the date provisional licenses can no longer be issued provided that the new location is approved in compliance with California Environmental Quality Act, and Chapter 6 (commencing with Section 1600) of Division 2 of the Fish and Game Code. If all other renewal requirements are satisfied, the department may also renew the license at the new location.
(i) (d)   The department A licensing authority  may, in its sole discretion, revoke or suspend a provisional license if it  the licensing authority  determines the licensee failed to actively and diligently pursue requirements for the annual license. The department shall adopt regulations clarifying what constitutes actively and diligently pursuing requirements for the annual license. 
(j) (e)  The department  A licensing authority  shall cancel a provisional license upon issuance of an annual license, denial of an annual license, abandonment of an application for licensure, or withdrawal of an application for licensure.
(k) (f)  Except as specified in this section, the provisions of this division shall apply to a provisional license in the same manner as to an annual license.
(l) (g)  Without limiting any other statutory exemption or categorical exemption, Division 13 (commencing with Section 21000) of the Public Resources Code does not apply to the issuance of a license pursuant to this section by the department, except as otherwise provided in this section. licensing authority. 
(m) (h)  Refusal by the department  licensing authority  to issue a license pursuant to this section or revocation or suspension by the department  licensing authority  of a license issued pursuant to this section shall not entitle the applicant or licensee to a hearing or an appeal of the decision. Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 480) of Division 1.5 and Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 26040) of this division and Sections 26031 and 26058 shall not apply to licenses issued pursuant to this section.
(n) For purposes of this section, “streambed alteration agreement” has the same meaning as the term “agreement” is defined in Section 1601 of the Fish and Game Code, which includes both individual agreements and general agreements under Section 1617 of the Fish and Game Code.
(o) (i)  The Department may not renew  A licensing authority shall not issue a new provisional license to an applicant on or after July 1, 2022, unless the applicant is a qualified equity applicant, as defined in Chapter 23 (commencing with Section 26240). The licensing authority, in its sole discretion, may reinstate  a provisional license after January 1, 2025 and no provisional license shall be effective after January 1, 2026. issued prior to July 1, 2022, to an applicant for the same activity previously licensed at the location. 
(p) (j)  This section shall remain in effect only until January 1, 2026, 2028,  and as of that date is repealed.
(q) It is the intent of the Legislature that no further exemptions from annual licenses be adopted and that any licenses issued under this division after January 1, 2025, be issued in compliance with all relevant environmental laws.
(r) It is the intent of the Legislature that funds appropriated in Item 1115-101-0001 of the Budget Act of 2021 shall be promptly deployed to allow local jurisdictions to meet the deadlines in this Act.
SEC. 4.
 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution.
SEC. 5.
 The Legislature finds and declares that this act furthers the purposes and intent of the Control, Regulate and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act.