Rulemaking

Rulemaking

Regulations are state laws with specific rules for how businesses and others must operate.  

The Department of Cannabis Control’s (DCC) regulations are in California Code of Regulations, title 4, division 19.

Current regulations

The three former cannabis programs had different regulations for cultivation, manufacturing and other license types. DCC is taking steps to consolidate those regulations into one.  

View the changes to the cannabis regulations:

Pending rulemaking actions

Emergency rulemaking for consolidation of the cannabis regulations

The Department of Cannabis Control (DCC) is conducting an emergency rulemaking action. This rulemaking would combine the three sets of cannabis regulations into one. It consolidates, clarifies and makes consistent licensing and enforcement requirements for cannabis businesses.

Read the proposed regulations and supporting documents:

How to submit a public comment

You can submit a comment on the proposed emergency regulations. Comments are due Monday, September 20. We cannot accept comments by phone.

Send your comment to both OAL and DCC by mail or email:

OAL Reference Attorney:

DCC Legal Affairs Division:

Rulemaking timeline

DCC gave notice of the proposed adoption of the emergency regulations on September 8, 2021. DCC filed the emergency rules with the Office of Administrative Law (OAL) on September 15, 2021.

Quick Response (QR) Code

DCC is proposing to adopt regulations for quick response (QR) code certificate requirements. These requirements are currently in effect as emergency regulations. If approved, this would adopt the regulations under the regular rulemaking process.

QR code certificates help the public check if a cannabis business is licensed. This helps people distinguish licensed cannabis businesses from unlicensed ones. Retailers and distributors must display the certificate. Employees transporting or delivering cannabis goods must also carry the QR code certificate.

View the rulemaking documents:

How to submit a public comment:

You can submit a comment on this rulemaking to the DCC Legal Affairs Division:

Comments must be received by September 21, 2021, at 5 p.m.

Approved rulemaking actions

Information sharing with financial institutions

The three cannabis programs adopted emergency regulations to implement Assembly Bill 1525 in February 2021. The regulations allow licensees to authorize us to share information with financial institutions.

View the rulemaking documents:

The emergency regulations were adopted in February 2021. DCC began a rulemaking process to readopt the regulations on July 16, 2021. Office of Administrative Law (OAL) approved the readoption of emergency regulations on August 2, 2021. They were filed with the Secretary of State and became effective on the same day.

Section 100

The three existing sets of regulations were moved into one title in the California Code of Regulations. The cannabis regulations are now together in Title 4, Division 19. Sections were also renumbered. No changes were made to the requirements in regulation.

This change used a rulemaking action called a Section 100. Section 100 lets agencies make changes to regulations that have no regulatory effect.

OAL approved the rulemaking actions and filed them with the Secretary of State on July 14, 2021.

View the changes to the cannabis regulations:

Read the Statements of Explanation, which explain why these change were made:

Regulations issued by the former cannabis programs

Email regulations@cannabis.ca.gov for copies of previous rulemaking files. You can also view them online:

How regulations are made

Regulations are made through a process called rulemaking. It gives the public the opportunity to take part in the creation of regulations proposed by California state agencies.

The Office of Administrative Law (OAL) oversees the rulemaking process. OAL makes sure that state agencies follow California’s laws when they adopt new regulations.

There are two types of rulemaking procedures: regular and emergency.

Most regulations are adopted using the regular rulemaking process. Some are adopted using the emergency rulemaking process, which allows rules to go into effect faster. The Department of Cannabis Control (DCC) can use the emergency rulemaking process when making rules for cannabis businesses.

Regular rulemaking process

  1. An agency publishes a summary of the proposed regulations in the California Regulatory Notice Register (also called Notice Register). The summary explains what the regulation does, why it is being created and its possible impact.
  2. The public has 45 days to comment on the proposed regulations.
  3. The agency publishes a summary of the public comments and the responses in the Notice Register.
  4. If the agency changes the regulation based on the comments, the public has another 15 days to comment.
  5. Once the agency is satisfied with the regulations, it publishes an updated summary to the Notice Register.
  6. The agency has up to one year from the first notice to complete the regulations.

Emergency rulemaking process

Emergency regulations are rules that can be put in place immediately while the agency completes the full rulemaking process. The emergency rulemaking process has different requirements, but generally includes:

  • A brief public notice period
  • A five-day public comment period

Before the formation of DCC, the cannabis industry was regulated by:

  • The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) – cultivators
  • The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) – manufacturers
  • The Bureau of Cannabis Control (BCC) – all other license types