Getting pot delivered door to door just got a lot easier, even in cities that have banned the commercial sale of marijuana.
The California Bureau of Cannabis Control recently gave the go-ahead for compliant delivery companies to travel anywhere in the state.
Some law enforcement and city officials are calling the move a threat to public safety.
KRON4’s Maureen Kelly takes a look at the controversy as she takes a ride-along with a local delivery company who hopes the state rules will help their growing business on the road to success.
“So this is what we’re gonna be delivering today,” the CEO of Cannabis Express says as she packs up a delivery bag full of pot products. “Kiva espresso beans, gummies.”
The order came in online and after it’s double checked, the package is popped in a lock box in the back of a company Prius.
It’s then driven from their SOMA location across town to their waiting customer.
David Simmons is given his pot purchases and after his ID is checked and his wad of cash taken, he is free to unpack his goodie bag in the privacy of his own home.
Simmons, who says he uses cannabis to help him sleep and to help ease his pain from an old injury, has been using this delivery service for about six months.
“I don’t always have time to make it to a dispensary or the store so that convenience is extraordinary,” Simmons explains.
As a licensed delivery service, Cannabis Express is happy about the Bureau of Cannabis Control’s new regulation since many cities and counties surrounding their hub have some sort of ban on commercial pot ban in place.
“We’re happy to be able to have the opportunity to give more patients access,” says CEO of Cannabis Express Marie Montmarquet. “And we’re loving being able to bring cannabis to anyone that needs it as well as people who are not able to come to a storefront dispensary and we can actually facilitate a delivery to their house if they’re not able for whatever reason, terminally ill, no car, family usually gets it — we can facilitate those deliveries for them.”
But not everyone is happy with the state’s position on free range pot delivery.
The California Police Chiefs Association has come out against it and so has the League of California Cities.
“This decision puts the public safety needs of communities across the state at risk,” said Carolyn Coleman, the Executive Director of the League of California Cities, in a statement.
greenrush, which provides the online sales platform for Cannabis Express and dozens of other weed delivery companies, believes an increase more legit doorstep pot transactions will actually make California communities safer since complaint companies have to follow state rules such as prohibiting deliveries after 10 pm.
greenrush estimates that there are several hundred-thousand licensed cannabis deliveries happening every month in California but at the same time it’s believed over a million unlicensed cannabis deliveries are happening statewide.
But while Cannabis Express is expecting this ruling will mean more deliveries for them to pack and deliver, it’s still an open question.
A cannabis business attorney says municipalities miffed about mobile marijuana sales, could end up taking the state or the cannabis delivery companies to court.
“It’s an interesting legal question because of the state level regulation that seems to conflict with a local level law,” said attorney Griffen Thorne. “So the issue a preemption in which one trumps the other is not 100 percent clear in this situation.”
So while companies like Cannabis Express feel like the state has given them a roadmap to success, it’s possible a future legal challenge could jam them up.
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