Spark-up and Celebrate: California Passes Proposition 64
California is the eighth state in the US to pass adult-use recreational marijuana. As of January 1, 2018, adults aged twenty-one and over can purchase and carry up to one ounce of cannabis or eight grams of concentrate. It is also legal to grow up to six plants in the home. While California is considered one of the more progressive states, not all cities and counties in Cali are on board with recreational cannabis. There are some cities that have banned rec use completely. When it comes to growing the plant at home, the law says growers must keep the plants locked in a hidden room.
Residents in California should be cognizant of all the nuances that come along with the passage of recreational cannabis. For instance, smoking in public is illegal. This includes outside the home on a porch or balcony. If the home is rented, the use of cannabis must be approved by the landlord. Most rentals do not allow for tobacco consumption, so it’s best to check with the homeowner before loading that bong. Restaurants and bars will remain smoke-free.
It’s important to keep in mind that cannabis consumption is still illegal at the federal level. That means that as an employee, one must adhere to the policies set forth by the company. If they promote a drug-free environment, the employer has the right to terminate for violating their drug protocol.
Carrying the legal amount of cannabis or concentrates is permitted, so long as any open containers are in the trunk of the car. California police officers are treating marijuana like alcohol and most of their officers have been trained to spot impaired drivers. Stay safe and consume in private with no intention of operating a vehicle to avoid any unfortunate encounters with law enforcement.
It may seem like the legalization of recreational cannabis is kind of a downer. There are a lot of rules and regulations to consider, but let’s look at the bright side. In 2018, the state is expected to make nearly seven billion dollars on rec sales alone. That means about one billion dollars in taxes will go to the state. Colorado legalized cannabis in 2015 and has made major improvements to schools and roads thanks to the tax on their legal cannabis industry.
What’s even better about the passage of rec use is the options to consumers. Flower is a huge part of the marijuana industry, but consumers can also purchase elixirs, tinctures, edibles, gummies and cannabis-infused wine. That’s not all. High-end lotions, topicals and massage oils with or without THC have hit the shelves in select dispensaries as well.
So, what do consumers need to know? Because cannabis is still illegal at the federal level, most dispensaries will work on a cash-only basis. Make sure to hit the ATM before heading to the pot shop. Additionally, because rec use has recently passed, be prepared to hang out in line for a while. Rec dispensaries are staggered in their opening, so check the maps in your area for the dispensary nearest you. Waiting in line isn’t all bad. You’ll get to meet some like-minded cannabis consumers and perhaps make a new friend or two.
To make the search a little easier, consumers can check out Weedmaps. This is a pros and cons kind of site. It’s great in that it will map out dispensaries nearest you. The downfall is cannabusinesses pay to be on this site. That means there might be a pot shop nearer that isn’t showing up on the map. If you aren’t excited about driving too far from your home, take the extra time to find the dispensary nearest you. Kushtoursim is a great alternative and has tons of information on other rec legal states, in case travel plans are on the horizon. There is a lot of buzz about cannabis deliveries. While that might be considered one of the greatest things ever, businesses are looking into the legalities of a delivery service. For now, consumers will need to head to the dispensaries. It’s not all bad. Walking into those businesses is a euphoric experience. The smell of fresh buds waiting to go home with consumers alone is worth the trip. Budtenders are there to guide people through this exciting new adventure and will help pick the perfect strain.
The passage of proposition 64 in California is a huge win for consumers and another step toward nationwide legalization. Adults can now take advantage of the new law and truly enjoy cannabis without ruining the high over the worry of legalities.