California News

Governor vetoes mandatory minimum penalties for marijuana shops that sell to minors

Gov. Jerry Brown last week vetoed a bill that would have set mandatory minimum penalties for California pot shops that sell to minors, including revocation of the state license for a third violation in three years.

The measure by Sen. Jean Fuller (R-Bakersfield) would have restricted the Bureau of Cannabis Control’s “ability to carry out enforcement actions based on the pertinent facts of a violation,” Brown said in his veto message.

“This bill is not necessary,” the governor added. “The bureau already has the authority to revoke, suspend and assess fines if a licensee sells to a minor.”

Fuller introduced the bill after California voters approved Proposition 64 to legalize recreational marijuana for adults 21 and older. The senator is concerned that the current rules mean disciplinary action is taken only at the bureau’s discretion.

“With Proposition 64 now law, preventing the distribution of cannabis and cannabis products to minors should be a top priority,” Fuller said.

The bill that was vetoed by the governor would have required a 15-day suspension for a first offense, a 25-day suspension on a second offense within 36 months, and revocation of the license for a third offense during the same period.

The governor signed another bill, AB 2164 by Assemblyman Ken Cooley (D-Rancho Cordova), that allows cities to impose fines for violations of local ordinances by marijuana growers.