Sacramento Approves Additional Cannabis Storefronts

After a unanimous vote by the Sacramento City Council recently, the city of Sacramento will now be allowed to open ten new storefront cannabis dispensaries. Since 2009, Sacramento has capped its number of storefront dispensaries at 30 shops.

Under the recently approved ordinance, all 10 of the new dispensary permits will go to individuals who participated in the city’s Cannabis Opportunity Reinvestment and Equity, or CORE, program.

Cannabis Opportunity Reinvestment and Equity (CORE)

Established in 2017, the CORE program was created to address the negative impacts of cannabis regulations in the city of Sacramento. The CORE program is designed to assist individuals and communities who have faced barriers while starting cannabis industries due to being from areas that were disproportionately affected by enforcement of cannabis related crimes.
With the previous cap on storefronts, participants of the CORE program did not have the opportunity to open a storefront dispensary, even after they had completed the required business training and mentorship through the program.

There are five levels of classifications to be eligible for the CORE program:

1. Lives or have lived in a low-income household in Sacramento AND:

   a) Have been arrested in Sacramento for cannabis–related crime between 1980-2011 or

   b) An immediate family member who meets the description above
2. Lived in a low-income household in the following zip codes for 5 consecutive years between 1980 and 2011: 95811, 95815, 95817, 95820, 95823, 95824, 95826, 95828, 95818, 95838 and 95832.

3. Businesses with no less than 51% ownership by Classifications 1& 2 individuals.

4. CORE Program Incubator. CORE Incubator means a cannabis business which as a condition for receiving priority processing, either:

   a) Hosts a participant; 30% of its workforce are Classification 1 or 2 eligible participants, measured by hours worked; and contracts no less than 51% of its cannabis products or services and ancillary business support with eligible participants; or

   b) Is a shared manufacturing cannabis business and donates at least 10% of its hours of operation to allow participant(s) to utilize 100% of its business’ floor space and equipment; or
   c) Is a cannabis business that sells, gives or otherwise transfers no less than a 33% equity share in the CORE Incubator’s cannabis business to eligible CORE participants or participants; 30% of its workforce be Classification 1 or 2 eligible; and contracts no less than 30% of its cannabis and ancillary business with Classification 1 or 2 eligible participants.

   CORE Incubators shall host, donate to, employ, contract with, sell, give, or transfer to participants that reside within the city district in which the incubator sits. If no such participants exist, incubators shall utilize participants from other applicable areas.

   d) Cannabis Social Enterprise with no less than 51% ownership by Classifications 1& 2 individuals.

According to a City Council Report, the new permits will be awarded through a “competitive based process,” much like a request for proposal or “RFP” process. This process includes evaluating the applicant’s likely success and business-readiness in relation to applying for permits and operating the business. In the likelihood that some applicants receive the same score, there will be a blind selection process.

An earlier proposal set to have the 10 permits awarded between 2020 and 2021 with five given out each year. Following the recently approved ordinance, all 10 permits will now be made available at once.

Sacramento Attorneys on Cannabis Retail Storefronts

Sacramento attorney helping commercial cannabis businesses. Feel free to contact Sacramento Cannabis attorneys to set up an initial consultation. Our attorney helps with cannabis licensing, compliance and litigation.

Call Us: (916) 669-8400

*The information provided in this post does not constitute legal advice or opinion. The information is for guidance purposes only. Individual situations vary and you should contact an attorney for legal advice. Rooted Legal PC includes attorneys who are well-versed in cannabis law matters and are located in Sacramento California. This post is addressing a Sacramento City Council to add Cannabis Retail Storefronts.