California Announces $35M Grant to Support Cannabis Social Equity Businesses

The California Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development announced a $35 million grant intended for communities that were most negatively impacted by cannabis prohibition.

Full story after the jump.

California’s Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) is providing $35 million in grant funding to jurisdictions to support social equity in the state’s cannabis industry.

Jurisdictions are able to use the funding to develop their cannabis equity programs and assist their equity program applicants and licensees by providing low and no-interest loans or grants, reduced licensing fees or waived fees, and technical assistance, including one-on-one consulting and training, and navigation assistance with cannabis licensing and regulatory requirements.

Over $29.5 million of the funding, in the form of low and no-interest loans or grants, will be allocated to cannabis equity applicants and licensees specifically identified by local jurisdictions as being linked to populations or communities that were negatively or disproportionately impacted by cannabis criminalization, the governor’s office said in a press release.

Gov. Gavin Newsom’s Chief Economic and Business Advisor and Director of GO-Biz Dee Dee Myers said that the new round of funding brings the state’s total commitment for the program to $90 million since California passed legalization in 2016.

“Cannabis Equity Grants will help level the playing field for those that have borne the brunt of past federal and state anti-drug policies while striving to make California’s Cannabis Industry more equitable and accessible to those individuals.” – Myers in a statement

The majority of the individual disbursements – more than $5.7 million – are being earmarked for Los Angeles, while Oakland will receive more than $5.4 million. The city and county of San Francisco will see more than $4.4 million from the program, and Sacramento will receive more than $4.3 million. Other grants range from $3.4 million (Humboldt) to $550,000 (Monterey) and another five jurisdictions will receive $75,000 each for cannabis equity assessment and program development.

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