Chapter 7.124


7.124.010    Purpose.

7.124.020    Definitions.

7.124.030    Medical cannabis regulations.

7.124.010 Purpose.

The purpose of this chapter is to provide regulations concerning the cultivation and possession of cannabis for personal medical use in the unincorporated area of Santa Cruz County.

This chapter is not intended to conflict with Federal or State law. It is the intention of the County that this chapter be interpreted to be compatible with Federal and State enactments and in furtherance of the public purposes that those enactments encompass. [Ord. 5258 § 2, 2017].

7.124.020 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following words and phrases shall have the meanings respectively ascribed to them by this section:

(A)    “Cannabis” means all parts of the plant Cannabis sativa Linnaeus, Cannabis indica, or Cannabis ruderalis, as defined under Business and Professions Code Section 19300.5(f), as may be amended.

(B)    The following words or phrases when used in this section shall be construed as defined in California Health and Safety Code Section 11362.7: “identification card”; “person with an identification card”; “primary caregiver”; and “qualified patient.” [Ord. 5258 § 2, 2017].

7.124.030 Medical cannabis regulations.

(A)    The County of Santa Cruz shall maintain a voluntary State identification card program operated by the Health Services Agency as authorized by Health and Safety Code Section 11362.7 et seq. The purpose of this voluntary identification card program is to help law enforcement officers identify individuals whose possession of medical cannabis qualifies under Health and Safety Code Section 11362.5. The County recognizes that individuals who qualify to use medical cannabis may require the support of numerous caregivers to meet their needs for housing, health, or safety under California Health and Safety Code Section 11362.5(e). The County of Santa Cruz also recognizes that not all medical cannabis users will elect to access the medical cannabis user identification card and the existence of the program shall not limit the protections afforded by the Compassionate Use Act of 1996.

(B)    In addition to the fee charged by the State of California, the Health Services Agency is authorized to charge a fee sufficient to cover the County’s costs of the medical cannabis user identification and primary caregiver identification cards program. The County fees charged are set by resolution of the Board of Supervisors. The Health Services Agency shall consider the extent of an applicant’s ability to pay the whole or partial fee and may provide for fee waiver or reduction in appropriate cases.

(C)    Possession and Cultivation. A qualified patient or a person holding a valid identification card, or the designated primary caregiver of that qualified patient or person, may possess amounts of cannabis up to three pounds of dried cannabis bud or conversion per year. A qualified patient or a person holding a valid identification card, or the designated primary caregiver of that qualified patient or person, may cultivate cannabis in an amount not to exceed more than 100 square feet of total garden canopy, as measured by the combined vegetative growth area.

(D)    If a qualified medical cannabis patient or primary caregiver has an attending physician’s written, dated and signed recommendation that the quantities described in subsection (C) of this section are not sufficient to meet the medical cannabis patient’s needs, said patient or caregiver may possess an amount of cannabis consistent with the attending physician’s written recommendation. [Ord. 5258 § 2, 2017].