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Stay Classy, San Diego




This April marks the first celebrations of 420 since the passage of the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA), and that means that this year’s celebrations will undoubtedly be the greenest ever. However, before you break out the party hats, there are a few important facts to remember in order to have a safe and fun holiday. Follow this guide and celebrate the festivities to the fullest.

Possession and Purchasing

AUMA makes it lawful under both state and local law for adults ages 21-and-over to possess, process, transport, obtain or give away cannabis to other adults no more than one ounce (28.5 grams) of cannabis. This means that this 420 you can pack your favorite strain, vape pen or edible and head out the door to a 420 party! However, since we don’t have licensed recreational retailers yet, the best way for adults to obtain cannabis under AUMA is for patients who lawfully obtain cannabis to share it with their friends who are of age. Such sharing is permissible and encouraged, especially on the “high holy day” of 420.

“AUMA allows adults to cultivate up to six plants and possess the cannabis from these plants at their residence for personal use.”


Another way non-patients can obtain cannabis is to grow their own plants. AUMA allows adults to cultivate up to six plants and possess the cannabis from these plants at their residence for personal use. However, it is important to note that the law only allows six per residence, not per adult in the household. An important distinction is that these limits don’t apply to medical users, who in theory, can grow amounts of cannabis that are related to their medical needs per Prop. 215.

If your six plants and harvested cannabis amount to an excess of one ounce, it must be kept at your home, in a locked space and cannot be visible to the public. Violation of these rules could result in a maximum fine of $250.

The ability to engage in outdoor cultivation depends upon local city and county ordinances. Be sure to check what is and isn’t allowed in your neck of the woods before tilling your personal backyard cannabis farm. AUMA requires outdoor grows to be hidden from public view. Additionally, high fencing or coverage is encouraged to prevent police investigation or potential theft.

Consumption, Smoking and Vaping

Of equal importance is where you can consume cannabis. Smoking or ingesting cannabis is strictly prohibited in any public place. Violations can result in a $100 fine. This means that the only place to lawfully consume would be a private home or establishment or at licensed dispensaries when authorized by local governments. Unfortunately, San Diego does not have any such establishments yet. This rule also applies to vaping, even if no odor is emitted.


Another important aspect of AUMA is the use of cannabis in vehicles. The current laws prohibit driving while impaired are unchanged. Also, consumption or possession of an “open container” of cannabis or cannabis products is prohibited while driving or riding as a passenger. Violations are a $100 infraction. That being said, it is permissible to transport up to an ounce of cannabis in your vehicle.

To avoid “open container” trouble, keep the cannabis in a closed container and in the trunk of the car in order to ensure compliance.


It is important to remember that employers still have the right to maintain a drug-free work place and can terminate employment if cannabis shows up in your system. Bear that in mind when you hit the road and party circuit this 420!

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