The California Legislature just approved a $100 million boost to the state’s struggling legal marijuana industry. It still needs approval from Governor Newsom, but if he signs off on it, Los Angeles will reportedly see the biggest chunk of the funding. Some say it can help create a thriving, well regulated and legal cannabis market. Currently, the industry is still far outnumbered by unlicensed businesses according to researchers.
Alex Traverso, communications chief of the state’s Bureau of Cannabis Control, says the illicit marijuana market is still too big. “That’s the problem. But we’re trying to attack it in a variety of ways, obviously, with licensing, getting more more people licensed as quickly as we can.”
Some people who are trying to break into the cannabis market say the current process for retailers to switch from a temporary, provisional license to a permanent one is costly and complicated. Traverso says a mix of things can help address that, from supporting license applicants to having strong enforcement against illegal operators.
How can cannabis consumers tell the difference between legal and illegal retailers?
One thing to look out for: business hours. Traverso says, “Standard hours of operation are … 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.