Cannabis Cafes: How they could be easier for cities to regulate

SACRAMENTO, Calif — When it comes to cannabis, marijuana, the devil's lettuce or whatever you want to call it, people can only really consume it safely in their home without being a public nuisance in California.

With the passing of Proposition 64, cities and local jurisdictions were given the ability to allow for cannabis cafes or lounges, where people can go, purchase cannabis and consume it. However, the state does not have any regulations regarding cannabis cafes for which cities can refer.

John Leonard, the lead staff for cannabis ordinances in the City of West Hollywood, said that when West Hollywood went through creating regulations for cannabis cafes it was harder than it should have been.

"[This bill] will make things easier," Leonard said. "When you have local and state regulations that are conflicting it can be hard."

Leonard explained that currently, cities have to conform their regulations to the state regulations for cannabis retail stores.

AB 1465 would not take away a city's ability to decide if they want cannabis cafes but would allow for city's to have a platform to go off to make their own regulations for them.

One thing that the proposed legislation does not have is ventilation codes. Both San Francisco and West Hollywood have codes requiring certain ventilation for cannabis cafe businesses. Leonard said that West Hollywood's codes require that there is a ventilation system that does not allow smoke to leave the building in a way that affects neighbors and it doesn't create a smoke-filled room.