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The County of San Diego is transferring its cannabis licensing program for unincorporated areas from the Sheriff’s Department to the County’s Planning and Development Services (PDS). This is another step in the County’s efforts to create a safe, regulated and legal cannabis policy for the unincorporated communities. 

Today, the Board of Supervisors passed the first reading of an ordinance to make the transfer.  Supervisor Nathan Fletcher, the co-author of a policy in 2021 with Supervisor Nora Vargas to expand cannabis manufacturing, retail and cultivation in the unincorporated areas, issued the following statement:  

“Shifting to code compliance teams makes San Diego more consistent with the rest of California, and frees up our Sheriff Deputies to spend their time protecting our community and cracking down on illegal cannabis operations,” said Supervisor Fletcher. “Today’s action is another step in our process to support a safe, regulated and legal cannabis industry in our County 

PDS Code Compliance will be able to:

  • Process license renewals and transfers; 
  • Conduct background checks;
  • Issue operating certificates to applicants; 
  • Conduct quarterly and periodic unannounced inspections; and 
  • Enforcement. 

The ordinances will be brought back for a second reading and official adoption on November 16, 2022, and be effective 30 days after adoption. To read the entire policy, click here.