California Assembly Passes Bill to Let Cannabis Cafes Sell Food & Non-Alcoholic Drinks, Host Live Music

The California State Assembly has approved legislation to let cannabis cafes serve food and non-alcoholic beverages and host live events including music and other performances. The bill moves next to the Senate.

Full story after the jump.

The California State Assembly has passed the bill allowing licensed cannabis cafes to offer non-infused food and non-alcoholic beverages, KTLA5 reports. The proposal would also allow cannabis cafes to host events including live music, comedy, and other performances.

Lawmakers passed Assembly Bill 1775 on Monday with a 56-5 vote after the bill’s third reading.

People are allowed to consume cannabis at licensed dispensaries in California but the state does not currently allow cannabis businesses to sell other consumables, such as food and beverages. The bill would require the sale and display of non-infused food and beverages to be handled separately from the cannabis sales.

Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) last year vetoed a similar bill citing concerns the bill could violate the state’s smoke-free protections, which prohibits people from smoking in enclosed spaces while at work. But the bill’s sponsor Assemblymember Matt Haney (D) said in the report his goal was “fairness” for cannabis operators, who must face the combined hurdles of strict regulations and competition from the illicit market.

“It’s really about fairness and supporting businesses that follow the rules. If we keep allowing unnecessary regulations to strangle California’s legal cannabis businesses, we’re just encouraging illegal drug sales and all of the problems that come with that.” — Haney, in a statement

The bill still has to pass the Senate before reaching the governor’s desk.

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