A California Supreme Court judge ruled that a marijuana testing laboratory could reopen immediately after it closed in January as regulators revoked its license.
Judge Frank Roesch wrote in his ruling late Thursday that the state’s Cannabis Control Bureau “was prohibited from” enforcing “the” revocation “issued to Hayward-based Harrens Lab last month, and ordered the laboratory” to continue under (his “conduct can act) provisional) license pending further court order. “
Harrens filed a lawsuit against the Bureau of Cannabis Control a few weeks after revoking the provisional license, claiming that the lack of an appeal process for revoking the license was in violation of his right to due process.
Roesch has scheduled a hearing for March 25th so that both sides can continue to argue about whether the state has a right to an injunction against the laboratory.
That hearing sets the stage for a larger legal question of whether marijuana companies that operate under provisional licenses have a right to due process, said attorney James Anthony, who represents Harrens Lab.
“The lab’s position is that the (83% of) provisional licensees who make up the bulk of California’s multi-billion dollar cannabis industry have a constitutionally protected ownership interest in their licenses.” And that’s why the government can’t shut them down without due process, ”Anthony wrote in an email to Marijuana Business Daily.
“Judge Roesch noted that it will be an ‘interesting case’,” wrote Anthony, adding that a final decision on the case could take months if Harrens prevails at the March 25 hearing.
In a response to the lawsuit, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra argued this week that the 8,280 provisional licenses held by marijuana companies do not have due process under applicable law because those permits are temporary and therefore these companies are not. They do not enjoy the same legal status and the same rights as the annual licensees.
So far, the state has only issued 1,670 annual permits.
– John Schroyer