Soon the State of California will begin processing applications from businesses hoping to participate in the world’s largest and fastest growing regulated cannabis market. The State application process has been designed to preserve local control with public safety as the top priority however continued delays at the local level are putting Santa Cruz businesses in jeopardy.
Without quick action by local leaders, Santa Cruz businesses will be shut out of that process.
A simple solution is available: Authorize local businesses to continue operation while they seek state licensing. This affords policy makers, staff and the public the time to thoughtfully consider the EIR, better align ordinances with state law and regulations and to reconcile local policy to the new reality of legalized adult use.
Conservative estimates of the value of our local cannabis trade is $500 million annually, putting it on a par with agriculture and tourism. Many of the hundreds of family farms and cottage businesses that have been operating locally for decades have already been forced to relocate to other parts of the state to avoid significant disruption or bankruptcy. Others have had to halt needed investments, layoff workers and re-think their business plans.
Since 2015, by some estimates, as much as half of local cannabis production has been lost to other counties due to regulatory and administrative uncertainties.
Please join with GreenTrade to urge your elected officials to take action to protect and promote the growth of a safe, environmentally responsible, socially conscious, economically viable cannabis trade in our community by ensuring local businesses are eligible to apply for state licensing.
The consequences of inaction are serious and will affect our whole community.
Santa Cruz could lose one of its largest economic drivers, turn away millions of dollars in annual tax revenue, disrupt hundreds of businesses and families and be left with only unlicensed, unregulated operators.
The clock is running out, the time to act is now.
Please, write, call or visit your local representative and tell them: “We Support Santa Cruz Cannabis” Alert your friends and neighbors to the serious social, economic and, environmental consequences of continued delays in reaching a simple, common sense solution. Become a full or supporting member of GreenTrade; click here to sign up.