Cannabis Business Permits

The City of Stockton is accepting applications for commercial cannabis businesses.


Applications for Delivery, Non-Volatile Manufacturer, and Testing Lab

There is no limit on the number of permits for Delivery, Non-Volatile Manufacturer, and Testing Lab businesses. Interested parties may apply beginning April 4, 2019. 


Applications for Retail Storefront, Cultivation, Volatile Manufacturer, and Microbusiness

The City will be issuing two (2) new permits on an annual basis, using a lottery system, for each of the following business types:

  • Retail Storefront (dispensary)
  • Cultivation
  • Volatile Manufacturer
  • Microbusiness

Applications for these permits will be accepted from General Pool and Equity Applicants, April 5, 2019, through May 31, 2019. Four (4) of the annual permits issued – one (1) per business type – will be reserved for an Equity Applicant. See “Equity Program” below.  All applicants must complete a Commercial Cannabis Business Lottery Applicant Screening Form.


Application and Permitting Process

Each applicant is responsible for reviewing the Stockton Municipal Code and submitting a complete application that is compliant with all laws and regulations.


The Cannabis Business Use Permit Guide, including a flowchart, provides information about the application and permitting process.


To start a cannabis business in Stockton, the City requires the following permits:

  • Land Use Permit
  • Business License
    • A business license is required for all businesses within the City of Stockton.
    • Issued by the Administrative Services Department, Business Licensing Division.
  • Operators Permit
    • This permit is required for the business operator.
    • Issued and approved by the Stockton Police Department.



The current Annual Fee Schedule for FY 2018-19 has been amended with new and updated fees for Commercial Cannabis Businesses.

Equity Program

The City will issue half of the permits for Retail Storefront (dispensary), Cultivation, Volatile Manufacturer, and Microbusiness to Equity applicants. To qualify as an Equity Applicant:

  • Greater than 50% of ownership must be a Stockton resident AND meet ONE of the following criteria. Links to websites for these organizations can be found under External Links below:
    • Minority Business Enterprise (MBE)
    • Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE)
    • Live in one of Stockton, California Opportunity Zones
    • Live in an SB 535 Disadvantaged Area 
    • Live in a HUD-designated Area


Timeline for General Pool and Equity Applicants

  •  Application Period for General & Equity Applicants
    • April 5 – May 31, 2019
  • Applicant Informational Workshop
  • Application Review Period
    • June 1 – June 14, 2019
  • Eligibility Notification
    • June 17, 2019
  • Random Lottery Selection
    • June 28, 2019, 10:00 am, Permit Center - 345 N El Dorado Street
  • Notification of Selected Applicants 
    • July 5, 2019
    • Applicants will be notified via e-mail.


Stockton Municipal Code Sections for Commercial Cannabis Businesses

There are several sections within the Stockton Municipal Code that address aspects of Commercial Cannabis Businesses. For additional information, please refer to the following sections:

  • SMC Title 5 - Chapter 5.98, 5.99, and 5.100
  • Development Code Title 16 - Chapter 16.20, Section 16.20.020; Chapter 16.64, Section 16.64.040; Chapter 16.80, Section 16.80.195; and Chapter 16.240, Section 16.240.020



External Links

Bureau of Cannabis Control California

California Cannabis Industry Association

California Department of Food & Agriculture - CalCannabis Cultivation Licensing

California Department of Public Health - Manufactured Cannabis Safety Branch

California Department of Tax and Fee Administration

California Opportunity Zones

HUD (Housing and Urban Development)

Medicinal and Adult-Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MAUCRSA)

Minority Business Enterprise (MBE)

National Cannabis Industry Association

SB 535 Disadvantaged Communities

Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE)


This City of Stockton web page last reviewed on --- 4/3/2019