To regulate cannabis businesses in the County of Santa Cruz, the County has taken the following actions:
Adopted a Dispensary ordinance, County Code 7.130 for licensing medical cannabis dispensaries. There are 12 dispensaries currently licensed. No new dispensaries are being licensed at this time. For more information click here.
Commissioned an Environmental Impact Report to evaluate the potential environmental impacts of non-retail commercial cannabis businesses in the unincorporated County of Santa Cruz. Public comments were received during a 60-day comment period which ended on October 31, 2017. All comments were considered and final regulations were drafted based upon public and agency comments. Click here for more information regarding environmental review of the proposed cannabis regulations.
The County has released proposed final ordinances to regulate non-retail commercial cannabis businesses including cultivation, manufacture and distribution and final public hearings are scheduled in February and March to allow the public to weigh in on the regulations. See below for more detail.
NEW: Proposed Final Ordinances Released Santa Cruz County Code (SCCC) Chapters 7.128 and Amendments to 13.10: Non-Retail Commercial Cannabis Businesses
Planning Commission Hearing March 14, 9 AM
Based upon the findings of the Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR), recommended mitigation measures, and public comments received on the DEIR, the County has assembled proposed final draft ordinances for the consideration of the Board of Supervisors to regulate the commercial cannabis supply chain involving cultivation, manufacture and distribution:
SCCC Chapter 7.128 NON-RETAIL COMMERCIAL CANNABIS BUSINESSES establishes regulations for cannabis cultivation, manufacture and distribution.
SCCC Chapter 13.10 Zoning Ordinance Amendments for NON-RETAIL COMMERCIAL CANANBIS USES establishes land use permitting requirements and restrictions for cannabis cultivation, manufacture and distribution.
These two proposed final ordinances work in partnership to regulate the non-retail cannabis supply chain. While proposed SCCC 7.128 serves to establish operational restrictions and a cannabis licensing program for non-retail commercial cannabis businesses in Santa Cruz County, Amendments to SCCC 13.10 Zoning Ordinance have been proposed to establish zoning restrictions and land use permitting requirements for the industry. These partner ordinances are intended to be read in tandem to determine potential cannabis business site eligibility and operational restrictions for non-retail cannabis businesses.
Wednesday March 14th starting at approx. 9 AM, the Planning Commission will reconvene to consider the proposed ordinance amendments to Santa Cruz County Code Chapter 7.128, 13.10, 16.01 and related amendments to the Santa Cruz General Plan/Local Coastal Plan, regarding a Cannabis licensing, regulatory and land use program for cannabis cultivation, manufacturing and distribution activities. This item was continued from the February 28th hearing due to the large volume of new material and public comments received.
Direct link to proposed ordinances (dated February 28, 2018): 7.128, 13.10, BMOP.
Staff Report for March 14th hearing click HERE.
Agenda information and older staff documents and ordinance info may be found HERE.
If you have comments you would like to submit, attend hearing and you may speak during public comments OR email: PC2.28CannabisItemComments@santacruzcounty.us
Request to be Notified
If you wish to be notified about upcoming events or news, please email: Cannabis.Info@santacruzcounty.us and request your name be added to our mailing list.
Cannabis Tax Information
Please note that if you are conducting any commercial sales of your cannabis or cannabis products, you MUST be paying your 7% 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.