WEST HOLLYWOOD—The city of West Hollywood has become one of the first cities in the state to permit Adult-Use Retail cannabis sales. The recreational use of marijuana became legal in the state of California on Monday, January 1, 2018.

According to a press release from the city of West Hollywood, the city issued Temporary Use Permits (TUPs) to four existing Medical-Use Dispensaries, which authorize Adult-Use Retail sales at their current locations on a temporary basis starting on Tuesday, January 2, 2018. They include:

-Alternative Herbal Health Services (AHHS) 7828 Santa Monica Boulevard;

-The Los Angeles Patients & Caregivers Group (LAPCG) 7213 Santa Monica Boulevard;

-MedMen WeHo 8208 Santa Monica Boulevard; and

-Zen Healing, 8464 Santa Monica Boulevard.

“West Hollywood has led the way in the national discussion about decriminalizing the use of cannabis for medical purposes,” said West Hollywood Mayor John Heilman. “Now, our City is leading the way in supporting and authorizing adult-use of cannabis.”

Individuals looking to purchase Adult-Use cannabis must be at least 21 years old; people who wish to fulfill a Medical-Use prescription from a medical doctor have to be at least 18 years old. Smoking, vaping, or ingesting cannabis is not permitted in public places. Landlords are permitted to forbid cannabis use on their property and tenants who require medicinal cannabis and have a prescription may ask landlords for reasonable accommodations under state law. Despite California law, federal law still views cannabis as a controlled substance, even for medical use. Answers to Frequently Asked Questions are provided on the city’s website at www.weho.org/cannabis.

In November 2017, the West Hollywood City Council approved an Ordinance to approve amendments to the municipal code and zoning ordinance to regulate cannabis business and land uses. This follows the passage in 2016 of California Prop. 64, the Adult Use of Marijuana Act, and in 2017 of the Medicinal and Adult-Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act. The Ordinance allows for cannabis Business Licenses in five categories and makes West Hollywood one of the only cities in the state authorizing business licenses for consumption areas, where cannabis can be purchased and consumed on-site.

The city of Malibu voted against recreational marijuana sales on December 20, 2017. Members debated over a proposed ordinance that would have multiple impacts on laws as they currently stand. The proposal would not allow the two medicinal marijuana shops currently operating in Malibu to begin selling recreational marijuana. The proposal stipulated that any Malibu resident over the age of 21 can only grow up to six cannabis plants total. Specific rules for how and where the plants could be grown were included as well. The ordinance set very specific rules for transporting medical marijuana.

In a 3 to 2 vote, the council passed the ordinance. As a result, the two medicinal shops cannot sell recreational marijuana, and growing up to six cannabis plants is no longer a misdemeanor by local law. It is still considered a misdemeanor under federal law.

The initial cannabis business screening application process starts in late January 2018 in the city of West Hollywood with the publication of a screening application packet. West Hollywood will then, accept applications for a 30-day period, to be specified in the packet. Inquiries regarding the application process may be emailed to cannabis@weho.org.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department has issued an Advisory: “Drive Baked, Get Booked!” to remind the public that driving under the influence of marijuana is a crime and will bring the same result as driving under the influence of alcohol.

For additional information regarding cannabis in the city of West Hollywood, visit www.weho.org/cannabis. For information call the city of West Hollywood at (323) 848-6375. For people who are deaf or hearing impaired, call TTY (323) 848-6496.