Cannabis Legislation

The Medicinal and Adult-Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MAUCRSA), which was signed into law in June 2017, creates the general framework for the regulation of commercial medicinal and adult-use cannabis in California. The text of MAUCRSA is available on the California Legislative Information website.

MAUCRSA also established a dual licensing structure in which both the state and local governments participate in setting guidelines and public health standards for the industry. The state sets minimum requirements that all licensees must follow, and local governments are able to set additional requirements.


Cannabis Legislation Timeline

2017 – The California State Legislature passed a budget trailer bill, Senate Bill 94, that integrated MCRSA with AUMA to create the Medicinal and Adult‐Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MAUCRSA). Under MAUCRSA, a single regulatory system governs the medicinal and adult-use cannabis industry in California.

2016 – California voters passed Proposition 64, the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA). Under Proposition 64, adults 21 years of age or older can legally grow, possess, and use cannabis for non-medicinal purposes, with certain restrictions. Additionally, AUMA also made it legal to sell and distribute cannabis through a regulated business as of January 1, 2018.

2015 – The legislature passed the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MCRSA), a series of three bills that created a state licensing and regulatory system for the existing medical market. MCRSA also established the state’s three cannabis licensing authorities – (Bureau of Cannabis Control, CalCannabis Cultivation Licensing, and Manufactured Cannabis Safety Branch). These bills were repealed when MAUCRSA was passed in 2017.

1996 – California voters passed Proposition 215, the Compassionate Use Act (CUA) – the first voter-approved state ballot initiative for medical marijuana in the United States. CUA allowed qualified patients and approved caregivers to possess and cultivate medical cannabis and ultimately led to the formation of collectives and cooperatives to serve medical patients throughout the state.


Additional Cannabis Legislation 

To search for additional cannabis legislation and bills not included in the section listed above, please visit the California Legislative Information website.