Medical Cannabis

Medical Cannabis

Does the City of Livermore currently permit medical or recreational cannabis dispensaries, commercial cultivation, and/or manufacturing of cannabis product within City limits?

No. Presently, medical and recreational cannabis dispensaries, commercial cultivation, and manufacturing of cannabis products are not allowed within the City limits.

What is the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MCRSA)?

In October 2015, Governor Jerry Brown signed the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MCRSA) into law to oversee the medical cannabis industry in California. MCRSA became effective January 1, 2016.

MCRSA permits individuals who are 21 years or older to possess and grow small amounts of cannabis for personal use. The City cannot prohibit personal cultivation and use of small amounts of medical cannabis. However, large scale medical cannabis cultivation and sales are currently prohibited per Section 5.80.020 of the City’s Municipal Code.

What is the current status of cannabis regulations in the City of Livermore?

The City of Livermore staff is currently researching and gathering feedback about the prospect of permitting a medical cannabis dispensary in the City limits. After the public outreach phase, City staff will present the results of the public outreach to the City Council at a meeting in fall of this year. City Council will then decide whether to maintain the current prohibitions on medical cannabis dispensaries or direct staff to begin the process of amending the City’s regulations.

What is the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (Proposition 64)?

The Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA) (Proposition 64) was a 2016 voter initiative to legalize cannabis in California. The initiative passed with 57% voter approval and became law on November 9, 2016. 

When does the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA) take effect?

The AUMA took effect on November 9, 2016. As of this date, individuals who are 21 years and older may grow up to six recreational cannabis plants for personal use within a private residence. However, state regulations do not permit commercial recreational cannabis activity until the state begins issuing licenses on or about January 1, 2018.

Can the City control commercial cannabis operations in Livermore, in light of the passage of Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA)?

Yes, the AUMA prohibits the state from issuing a license to a commercial recreational cannabis business if that would violate a local ordinance of the jurisdiction in which the business will operate. This means that if the City of Livermore wishes to adopt regulations regarding commercial recreational cannabis business, it should adopt an ordinance prior to January 1, 2018. These regulations may include reasonable restrictions on personal indoor and outdoor cultivation of recreational cannabis plants.

What is the City Council’s direction regarding cannabis operations in the City of Livermore?

On December 12, 2016, City Council directed staff to begin public outreach on the prospect of permitting a medical cannabis dispensary in the Heavy Industrial (I-3) zoning district on the east side of Livermore. See the “Eligible Parcels” in green on this Medical Cannabis Dispensary Map.Public outreach thus far has included an online survey, conducted February 13th to March 7th, and a public workshop that was conducted on June 21. Results of the online survey and can be foundhere. The Council is expected to review the survey results and provide additional direction this fall.

Is the City of Livermore considering fees on medical cannabis products to cover City costs?

Applying a tax on medical cannabis is not permitted under Proposition 64. Additional fees to cover City costs will be considered and decided upon by the City Council.

Will people be able to smoke cannabis in public places in Livermore?

No. If amended, the ordinance would prohibit consumption of cannabis in a public place that is unlicensed for use, including near child day care centers, schools, nursing homes and other sensitive areas. The City’s smoking ordinance, which currently prohibits smoking in enclosed public places within City limits, including parks, restaurants, and retail areas may also apply to cannabis.

What is the status of Alameda County’s medical cannabis ordinance amendment?

Alameda County is currently updating their medical cannabis and cultivation ordinance to permit up to five medical cannabis dispensaries, two of which could be located in East Alameda County. The Alameda County Board of Supervisors approved the ordinance on August 1, 2017. If the Board of Supervisors confirm the approval on September 12, 2017, then the new ordinance will be in effect beginning October 12, 2017. Additional information can be found on the County’s Medical Cannabis webpage found here.

How can I stay informed?

Updates will be posted to Livermore’s Medical Cannabis webpage found here. For any other questions or concerns, please contact Ashley McBride at