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Application Requirements for Non-Retail Cannabis Business Licenses
(Cultivation, Manufacture, Distribution)

The Site Plan requirements for the Phase 1-pre application review have been updated. Click here for the Phase 1 Pre-Application Packet.


Pre-Application Process for Non-Retail Cannabis Business Licenses (Cultivation, Manufacture, Distribution)

Priority Processing List

The Cannabis Licensing Office (CLO) will open a Pre-Application process after the newly adopted ordinances become effective June 8th. Pre-Applications are the first step in your application review and will allow our staff to assess the basic eligibility of your proposal. Pre-Applications will be conducted by appointment-only and you will be contacted by the Cannabis Licensing Office (CLO) according to our priority processing list.

Priority processing will be offered to cultivators who obtained a Pre-License Inspection, and those distributors and manufacturers who qualified for and obtained a Letter of Local Authorization (LOLA).

Those Not on Priority Processing List

Once we have contacted everyone on the priority list, we will contact those on the cultivation registration list and offer appointment slots based upon date of registration. If you are seeking manufacturer and/or distribution licenses and have not obtained Local Letters of Authorization but wish to begin the licensing process, you should send an email to cannabisinfo@santacruzcounty.us requesting an appointment slot after June 8th stating the license type sought, name, address, telephone number, mailing address, and site location. If you do not know your site location, you are not ready for an appointment.

The CLO will contact those who submitted a statement of interest to the Cannabis Info email when we are ready to take applications. We will provide updates on our website about the status of permit processing (see News/Media page for updates). Other than emailing the Cannabis Info inbox we do NOT accept counter or phone call requests for Pre-Application appointments.

In All Cases

Appointments will only be available to those who have assembled ALL the required Pre-Application package requirements. It is difficult to accurately estimate how long it will take to complete Pre-Application consultations for those eligible applicants on the priority list. We anticipate that some applicants on the priority list will not have assembled the Pre-Application material in time to secure an early appointment, in which case we will offer the appointment slot to the next eligible registrant.

If you arrive at the appointment with incomplete materials you risk being placed at the back of the line. Please work to ensure you completely respond to all questions before your scheduled appointment.

A Word About the Coastal Zone

If your property is in the Coastal Zone, you may NOT yet apply for a Pre-Application appointment. The non-retail cannabis business ordinances that were just adopted in May 2018 only take effect outside of the Coastal Zone. The Coastal Commission must first review the ordinances and give their approval before they go into effect in the Coastal Zone. We anticipate the Coastal Commission will vote on the ordinances later this summer.


Cannabis Tax Information

Please note that if you are conducting any commercial sales of your cannabis or cannabis products, you MUST be paying your cannabis business tax on gross sales as of November 9, 2016. Failure to pay taxes could result in your being disqualified from obtaining a license in the future. Information on the Cannabis Business Tax and forms are available by clicking here: http://www.co.santa-cruz.ca.us/Departments/TaxCollector/CannabisBusinessTax.aspx. It is advisable to maintain a copy of your paid tax form(s) with your registration email and number on the form for future reference.

State and federal taxes also apply and you are responsible for making those payments, in addition to your local tax responsibility.