Cannabis LA Talk
Los Angeles Department of Cannabis Regulations was created in June and in August Mayor Eric Garcetti appointed Cat Packer as the first Executive Director of DCR. Cat Packer was a Army of One for a couple months until she hired Victoria, Brian and Jason to DCR. Before they knew it, the new year rolled around and Cannabis was legal in California and Los Angeles. January 3rd, 2018 licensing became available in Los Angeles for the Existing Medical Marijuana Dispensaries. While Cat Packer was attending meetings, town halls and raising money for her department. The Trio ready or not jumped in like champs and started taking care of business.
The flood gates opened with 519 applications being submitted. As of May 23rd, 160 EMMD applications were approved. Before July 1st the second phase will open up for Cultivators, Manufacturers, Distributors and Extractors.
DCR started accepting applications and answering questions. The EMMD that were PRE-ICO and had 2015,2016, or 2017 BTRC were allowed to apply for Priority Licensing. While EMMD started applying for temporary licensing and waiting to be approved. Angelenos started calling the department with questions and complaints. The simplest question such as “can I buy marijuana from anywhere after January 1st?” to “when can I get my marijuana license issued to me by the department?” Complains followed from people in Sunland Tujunga area complaining that their neighbor was smoking marijuana in their own house and they can smell it. How to get the neighbor to move or get them busted. Actual complaints such as new dispensary opened up around the corner from my house and they are open until midnight. Why isn’t anyone closing them down or how do we find out if they are legal? Fast forward 6 months and enforcement isn’t in place yet. DCR has recently hired 21 new employee’s to build their department. Office of Finance, City Attorney’s and a few from other city departments.
Asha Greenberg has retired from City of Los Angeles as the attorney leading the fight against marijuana business. Times are changing because City of LA has a new attorney in charge of the cannabis business and her name is Heather Aubry. Enforcement is coming shortly, we just hope it’s civil. If I had to ask the City officials and DCR one simple question. It would be to be respectful to the families of the dispensary owners. No need for Narcotics to break the door down to throw the grandmother on the floor and handcuff her or put a shotgun to a pregnant wife’s head to arrest her husband, or even put an AK 47 assault rifle to a mother’s head because her son operates a dispensary. My ask to Councilmembers and DCR is simple. This is a business problem, so sue the shit out of the landlord and make an example out of him. Turn the power off at the building the illegal activity is happening, cite the operators daily, audit their books and the vendors.
Los Angeles is moving forward rapidly. DCR with the leadership of Cat Packer has done a tremendous job getting one of the largest cities if not the largest city in the world on track from the wild wild west to a regulated market. Cat has approached the industry with respect and integrity. I have to say, many people doubted her when she first took the position. Some people said she will favor her people, other said she was too young and didn’t have the experience needed to lead a city department. I even heard people look at her and make comments like she should be smoking a joint and playing video games. My answer was, “She probably does when she’s off work. If she gets off work”.
There is a lot of stupid money coming into Los Angeles. There is a lot of people who will lose their jobs and grows once everything goes legal. Not every angeleno will make the cut and the industry that is going to bring in billions for California and Los Angeles is going to become corporatized. Corporations will take over the industry soon and the industry is going to go to crap. This will take approx 5 to 10 years, but it will come. In the meantime, a few millionaires will be made and a industry will grow.
DCR has been handling the bombarding of Los Angeles