Audit Flags Problems With Sacramento’s Cannabis Dispensary Program
Despite a Sacramento city ordinance prohibiting transfer of cannabis dispensary permits, over half of cannabis dispensaries have changed ownership, according to a new audit. The City is now recommending additional measures to prevent these transfers in the interest of oversight.
The audit was conducted at the behest of Mayor Darrell Steinberg after a Sacramento Bee investigation found nearly one-third of the city’s dispensaries were owned by the same group of investors. Of the 30 shops that have been opened since 2009, 18 have changed hands.
Additionally, the auditors warn that new rules meant to prevent consolidation of pot shops under a single owner could actually hinder equity efforts. The rules exclude those who already own multiple shops.
“Dispensaries that have consolidated ownership ... can continue to own multiple dispensaries. However, an individual seeking to invest in the City’s cannabis market anew, will only be permitted an ownership stake in one business,” the report noted.