There is much discussion in marijuana reform circles about how states and localities can best ensure the new growing marijuana industry develops in a diverse, socially equitable way. The latest effort to advance this agenda comes from the Minority Cannabis Business Association (MCBA), which has now released this interesting new “Model Municipal Social Equity Ordinance.” Here is part of the preface of this model ordinance:
This Model Municipal Social Equity Ordinance (“Model Ordinance”) is intended to be used by municipalities that have adopted ordinances to regulate, zone and license local cannabis businesses, or are currently considering draft ordinances to do so. As such, this Model Ordinance does not include recommended provisions for general license types (other than to add license types that lower barriers to entry or mitigate on-going criminalization of cannabis consumption), nor does it include detailed zoning and land use provisions. The drafters of this model ordinance assume those provisions are already incorporated within the adopting municipality’s general licensing ordinance, and that the general licensing ordinance already reflects the particular circumstances of its local community.
We also assumed that the types of licenses which may be available, and the general regulatory framework surrounding cannabis businesses will be largely predetermined by the state in which the adopting local jurisdiction sits. As such, the Model Ordinance contains only those provisions necessary to create a baseline framework for adopting and advancing social equity in the cannabis industry as official public policy — a “minimum viable product” designed to be broadly adopted and tailored as necessary by each adopting jurisdiction. Prevailing political realities in each jurisdiction will vary, and the Model Ordinance includes bolded and bracketed substantive terms that may be revised as necessary….
The Drafting Committee finalized this version of the Model Ordinance after incorporating input received on two previous working drafts. The First Discussion Draft was previously circulated in October 2018 and presented to the attendees of the MCBA Policy Summit, as well as the members of the MCBA Policy Committee and the MCBA Board of Directors. Their input was incorporated by the Drafting Committee into the Second Discussion Draft. The Second Discussion Draft was circulated for input to the MCBA Board of Directors, the NCIA Policy Council staff, Drug Policy Alliance staff as well as other select stakeholders for additional input before being finalized. Finally, please note that this Model Ordinance is intended to be a living documents, and one that can be continually improved upon. The Drafting Committee invites any and all input on the Model Ordinance, and expects to publish updated versions of the Model Ordinance periodically.
Interestingly, though the heart of the Model Ordinance is a social equity program, these heading from the model proposal show that more is covered than just business issues:
Section 1: Short Title
Section 2: Cannabis Social Equity Program
Section 3: Good Faith Effort for Equity in Employment
Section 4: Community Benefits Agreement
Section 5: Community Reinvestment Fund
Section 6: Record Change Provisions
Section 7: No Additional Restrictions Allowed on Entry Into the Cannabis Industry
Section 8: Data Collection
Section 9: Lowest Law Enforcement Priority
Section 10: Permitting Social Consumption Lounges
Section 11: Eliminating Suspicionless Drug Testing