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California Bill to Legalize Amsterdam-Style Cannabis Cafes Awaits Governor Newsom's Decision

SACRAMENTO - Exciting news for cannabis enthusiasts in California: cannabis cafes could soon be a reality. The state legislature has passed AB-374, a bill that would legalize Amsterdam-style cannabis cafes, and it is now awaiting Governor Gavin Newsom's signature.

Currently, it is illegal for cannabis smoke lounges to sell food and drinks that do not contain marijuana. However, if AB-374 becomes law, that would change. Local jurisdictions would have the authority to issue licenses for cannabis cafes at dispensaries.

The potential benefits of this legislation are significant. For one, it would create a more inviting atmosphere for cannabis consumers, offering a lounge-like experience. Haley Andrew, owner of the Dixon Wellness Collective, emphasized the positive impact it could have on business: "This would entice people to stay and also help us promote our business with revenue as well."

This development comes at a time when California's legal cannabis industry faces challenges. High tax rates and limited banking options put small dispensaries at a disadvantage, while the thriving black market continues to undermine compliant businesses that diligently fulfill their tax obligations.

With bipartisan support, AB-374 opens doors to a new era for cannabis in California. Stay tuned to witness the potential growth and transformation of this exciting industry.

Assemblymember Matt Haney, a bill writer, proposes a solution to reverse the damage to the cannabis industry. He believes that by offering a social experience where Californians can safely consume legal products together, we can improve the current laws.

So what would this experience look like? According to Assemblymember Haney, it could resemble the "cannabis cafes" found in the Netherlands. Picture enjoying coffee, food, and live music while legally consuming cannabis.

Supporters like Andrews believe that these changes could benefit smaller dispensaries by creating more job opportunities and providing better customer service.

However, not everyone is on board with this bill. Groups like the American Non-Smokers Rights Foundation worry that it will jeopardize smoke-free protections.

Currently, the bill is awaiting the governor's approval. If signed, it will become law next year.

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25 sept. 2023

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