Oakland Cannabis Taxes: Measure V

This upcoming November the Bay Area is set to see a number of Cannabis related tax measures and propositions appear on the ballot. It is important that cannabis businesses across the Bay Area familiarize themselves with the specifics of these measures.

Oakland, San Francisco, Morgan Hill, Santa Clara, Half Moon Bay and Contra Costa County will have cannabis tax measures on the ballot this November. Most cities will be voting on an increase in taxes or an adjustment to the current tax rate. In Half Moon Bay residents will be voting on delivery services as there are currently no dispensaries in the city.

Our hometown of Oakland has a more unique cannabis tax measure on its ballot. While most of the measures and propositions allow counties and cities to set cannabis tax rates, Oakland’s measure would give the City Council the ability to lower the current cannabis tax rates. Oakland currently has one of the highest cannabis tax rates in California. Giving the Oakland City Council the ability to lower the local cannabis tax rate would allow for the setting of a tax rate that is sensible for incoming and existing cannabis businesses. Measure V also calls for cannabis manufactures to be able to deduct the costs of raw materials similar to other manufacturing companies in non-cannabis industries.

In addition to the ability to lower the local tax rates and provide manufacturers the ability to deduct raw materials, Measure V will also allow businesses to make local tax payments in quarterly installments rather than having a large lump sum payment due annually.

We encourage all cannabis businesses operating in Oakland to review and familiarize themselves with Measure V and encourage all to vote “YES” on Measure V in the upcoming election. This will help the cannabis industry continue to thrive in Oakland and will produce additional jobs and tax revenue for the city.

For the full text of Measure V you can visit the City of Oakland website.

How to Verify A License

Compliance is a must when it comes to the legal cultivation, transportation, distribution and sale of cannabis in California. As a licensed business you want to ensure that you are fully compliant with the regulations and laws set by the Bureau of Cannabis Control (BCC).

Cannabis businesses at every level of the supply chain are responsible for ensuring that the companies they are doing business with are fully licensed and are permitted to operate within California.

Retailer, distributor, microbusiness, testing lab or event organizer licenses can be verified  through the Bureau of Cannabis Controls.

Step 1: Head to the BCC website: https://bcc.ca.gov

Step 2: Hover on “Licensees & Consumers”

Step 3: Click on “Check a License”

Step 4: Click on the type of license you are looking to verify

Step 5: Search either the license number or business name to verify

Manufacturer licenses must be verified through the California Department of Health

Step 1: Head to the CDPH website: https://www.cdph.ca.gov/

Step 2:  Click on “I am looking for”

Step 3: Scroll down to “Licensing, Certification and Other Credentials”

Step 4: Click on “Certificates, Licenses, Permits and Regulations”

Step 5: Click on “Cannabis Manufactures”

Step 6: Select “Licensee Lookup Tool”

Step 7: Search for either the business name or license number

The ability to verify who you are doing business with is a vital tool for keeping compliant under California law. The tools provided by the BCC and the CDPH allow you to have the proper checks and balances to verify the licenses of companies at all levels of the supply chain when dealing with cannabis in California.

Cannabis Security Surveillance

Security protocols help to provide safe work environments and protecting assets. With the legalization of cannabis cultivation, transportation, manufacturing and retail distribution, the installation of a high quality surveillance system is a must. In this installment of our blog we will review how a state of the art video surveillance system can assist in lowering risk.

Cannabis operators are no strangers to the inherent security risks of growing, manufacturing or transporting product. A major challenge for outdoor cultivators is protecting acres of plants under security guidelines that often restrict the use of armed security personnel for outdoor grows. A quality video surveillance system with night vision and motion activation is a great way to minimize risk and double as an alarm system.

One of the rising stars in high-quality video surveillance is Live Guard, which utilizes infrared motion detectors and 24/hour centrally monitored stations. When activated, live-feed video provides clear identification of trouble, giving Live Guard personnel immediate ability to verify a threat and react. Site protocols will elicit a call to on-site security, the local police, or a responsible authority within seconds. The same type of surveillance system is ideal for indoor facilities, dispensaries and transporters.

The cost of developing and maintaining a cannabis operation is expensive, but the installation of a quality surveillance system will save you a great deal of time and money in the long run. An inexpensive and unreliable surveillance system will not provide the quality pixilation necessary to identify individuals, vehicles and product. Inevitably, a cheap system will have to be replaced sooner than later.

Look for installers with quality, high pixilation cameras, solid warrantees, and monitoring stations located in the US. Many monitoring stations are located outside of the US and this can cause delays in reporting and emergency response.

5 Steps To A Security Plan

Security priorities change from business to business. For example, a cannabis dispensary has vastly different security protocols than a construction site. The question becomes how do you choose the security plan that is right for your business?

Core Security Solutions founder and Managing Partner Michael Yoell brings over thirty-five years of law enforcement and security experience in assessing the needs of our clients. Michael personally provides all of our security clients with a comprehensive security assessment for each business. In our first installment of the Core Security blog, Michael breaks down 5 key elements to a quality security plan.

Step 1: Threat Assessment

When looking at an overall security plan you must analyze the various safety and security threats that are significant to your facility.  The surrounding area is a good place to start when looking at potential threats.

For example, what is the pedestrian and vehicular traffic around your facility and how might that impact the safety of your clients and staff? What types of crime are prevalent in your area? Do you have a security plan for your vendors and transportation staff when entering or leaving your facility?

Step 2: Vulnerability Assessment

How secure is your facility? Have you engaged a security professional to evaluate the vulnerability of your facility? What surveillance, alarm and physical security measures will mitigate your risks?

Step 3: Risk Assessment

Once all the data has been collected the next step is to develop an overall risk assessment, out of which a Risk and Mitigation Plan should be developed to address potential security and safety risks.

Step 4: Implementation

A fully developed security plan will include recorded surveillance, alarm systems, physical armed/unarmed security, secured areas/rooms/vaults, security countermeasures, incident response protocols, reporting, notification & response procedures.

Step 5: Standard Operating Procedures (SOP’s)

Prepare and frequently update your SOP’s and ensure that adequate training is conducted on a consistent basis to ensure protocols and procedures are followed in the event of a security incident or emergency. Be prepared.

If you are looking to get to the ‘core’ of your security measures for your facility Core Security Solutions, Inc has the experience and track record to keep your facility safe and secure. Contact us via email at info@core-ops.com or give us a call at (510) 625-1505.