County fairs in America are known for some pretty outrageous ingestibles, from Fried Twinkies to Fried Jellybeans to Fried White Castle Burgers on a Stick. But those who wish to fry their brains at a California county fair may soon be able to ride that maryjane-go-round, as both houses of the California legislature have just passed bills that would allow for marijuana booths at county fairs.
"It is onsite sales and consumption. So think beer garden,” California Growers Association executive director Hezekiah Allen told CBS 5. “The business that’s applying for it will have to meet every regulation and every requirement of the entire regulatory framework.”
Cannabis at county fairs passed both the California state senate and state assembly last week as a small proposal that was part of a much broader set of cannabis industry regulations, including standards for labeling and lab testing, establishing environmental safeguards, and criteria for claiming your weed is certified organic, among many other new rules. And the rules are moving fast. So fast, in fact, that in the state senate version contained a typo that referred to “cannabis” as “cannibals”.
According to ABC 7, the marijuana would have to be sold and smoked outside of public view.
The new county fair allowances do not mean you can just buy weed at, say, this weekend’s Alameda County Fair. What these allowances do mean is that already-licensed cannabis businesses will be able to apply for temporary licenses to sell cannabis at short-term events like county fairs in the future. The process is still not determined, and clearly runs afoul of the Prop. 64 stipulation forbidding sales of alcohol and cannabis at the same establishment.
“I think the regulatory agencies will deal with those questions in the next couple of months,” Allen said,
Both legislatures’ versions of the bill are only relevant to locally owned and state-owned fairgrounds. But each county is allowed to make their own cannabis rules, so counties could still ban these sales, or allow sales on private festival grounds. Governor Brown is expected to sign both bills into law, and recreational marijuana sales in California cannot begin until January 1, 2018.
Related: Eight Great Bay Area County Fairs And Festivals To Venture To This Summer