California County Guidelines

2/17/2016 – This page lists ordinances that were in place before January 1, 2016. We are tracking over 400 localities where cultivation bans have passed or been proposed, due to theerroneous and now repealed March 1 deadline in the state MMRSA regulations.

Arguably these are “placeholder” ordinances retaining locals’ right to license and regulate once MMRSA is fully implemented. We are working on strategies to challenge the bans, andencouraging local action to start the process of developing regulations instead.

Absent a local ordinance, state law will allow 100 square feet of medical cannabis for a patient, and allow caregivers to grow 500 square feet for up to five patients. State licensing for commercial-sized medical marijuana farms is allowable under the new law, provided locals approve. Existing entities can operate with local approval until January 1, 2018. Read moreand contact a Cal NORML legal committee attorney.

Also see: ASA’s Local Access Project, their model ordinance protecting commercial cultivation,and their memo for local lawmakers.

Appeals Court Rules Marijuana Growers Can’t Be Criminalized by Local Ordinances

The CA Board of Equalization has issued a special notice to growers and sellers of medical cannabis telling them that they are required to register and file returns. There is no charge for registering with the BOE. Note that growers do not have to pay sales taxes on products that they sell to retail dispensaries and collectives, provided the latter have a BOE resale permit. However, they are required to report their sales to the BOE. Cal NORML strongly advises all parties involved in the marijuana industry to register with the BOE if they are interested in becoming legal providers under California law.

The North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board has issued an order for cannabis cultivation and similar activities along with Best Management Practices.

The Central Valley Water Board has also issued a general order about marijuana cultivationRead more.

Marijuana pesticide guidelines issued by State of California April 8, 2015

State Water Resources Control Board Cannabis Enforcement Unit page

Information by CANORML


I have broken the state into sections, to make it easier to locate your county’s information….

Below you will find the following pages:

Northern California

Central California

Southern California

Information will be added to our lists daily. Please check back for updates to your county guidelines.



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