California’s Department of Cannabis Control (DCC) has announced it has doubled funding for the Phase II round of its Local Jurisdiction Retail Access Grant programme.
Consumers in California are currently limited in their access to regulated cannabis as nearly two-thirds of cities in the state have prohibited the establishment of cannabis retailers.
DCC is aiming to address the issue through its second round of funding in its retail grant programme, equipping governments with the resources they need to establish licensing programmes.
The $20 million fund allocated its first phase of grants to 18 cities and counties in June to the tune of $4 million. The second phase is now doubling the award amounts, making $15 million available, and will launch in October 2023.
Grant awards will be given to eligible jurisdictions based on the number of local cannabis retail licenses that they issue. Eligibility critieria includes:
- Not having a cannabis retail licensing programme prior to July 2022.
- Does have a plan to develop and implement a cannabis retail licensing programme.
- Has issued one or more cannabis retail licenses to cannabis businesses within the jurisdiction.
DCC has stated that it intends to award the following amounts per local license issued:
- Up to $150,000 for each eligible cannabis retail license issued, or
- Up to $300,000 for each eligible equity cannabis retail license issued.
- A maximum of $2 million per jurisdiction in Phase II.
DCC Director Nicole Elliott commented: “There are still many locations throughout the state where cannabis usage is notable, but existing consumers do not have convenient access to legal retail cannabis.
“We know that cannabis consumers often make purchasing choices based on convenience, so sufficient access to legal retail reinforces extremely important consumer safeguards.”