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Cannabis in Culver City

Latest Updates (2/16/18)

Please note: The City of Culver City has not yet released an application for cannabis business permits. The City is not accepting any applications or requests for cannabis business permits at this time. It is expected that applications for manufacturing, distribution, cultivation, testing, and delivery-only retail businesses will be released towards the end of the first quarter of 2018. Applications for storefront retail businesses (dispensaries) are now expected to be released sometime during the second quarter of 2018. Please click/tap the Subscribe button below to sign-up to receive an e-mail notification when applications are available, as well as other updates.

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Cannabis Business Regulations

All cannabis businesses in Culver City are required to obtain a City cannabis business permit in order to legally operate. Applications for cannabis business permits are not yet available. The City expects to release the application for manufacturing, distribution, cultivation, testing, and delivery-only retail businesses towards the end of the first quarter of 2018. Applications for storefront retail businesses (dispensaries) are expected to be released sometime during the second quarter of 2018.

Types of Permitted Cannabis Businesses

The following business types are allowed (both medicinal and adult-use) with a City permit:

  • Storefront Retail
  • Delivery Only Retail (“Home Delivery”)
  • Manufacturing
  • Distribution
  • Laboratory Testing
  • Indoor commercial cultivation

The following business types are prohibited:

  • Commercial outdoor cultivation
  • Commercial mixed-light cultivation

Businesses are allowed to apply for and receive permits in multiple business categories (eg manufacturer/distributer), as long as they meet all the requirements of each category and are located in the appropriate zone.

Maximum Number of Permits Issued

The City will issue a limited number of permits in each category:

Permit Type

Maximum Number of Permits

Storefront Retail


Delivery-only Retail






Cultivation (Indoors)


Testing Laboratory



ADelivery permits issued to a storefront retail cannabis business will not count towards this maximum number of delivery-only permits.


BDistribution and/or delivery permits issued to a manufacturing permit holder (pertaining to its manufacturing business and on the same property) will not count towards the maximum number of distribution or delivery-only permits allowed.


During the initial application period, should more qualified applicants apply for a commercial cannabis business permit than the maximum number of permits allowed for Manufacturing, Distribution, Cultivation, Delivery-only Retail, or Testing (subject to comments A and B, above), the City Manager will implement a lottery or another approach (not first-come-first-served) to determine which applicants receive a permit.


The City will award up to three storefront retail cannabis business permits through a competitive, multi-phased, merit-based process, with the City Council ultimately approving the awarding of the permit. A conditional use permit will also be required for storefront retail cannabis businesses.

Permit Application and Selection Process

Culver City’s cannabis business permit application and selection process is established by City Council:


  • Application (The Application for a cannabis business permit is not yet available. It will be posted here when available.)

  • Zoning Verification Form (The Zoning Verification Form is not yet available. It will be posted here when available.)

  • Criminal Background Check / Live Scan Form (The criminal background check Live Scan form is not yet available. It will be posted here when available.)

Restrictions on Operating Hours

Cannabis businesses are limited to the following limits on operating hours:

  • Cannabis retail storefronts may only be open for business between 8:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m.

  • Cannabis deliveries by delivery-only retailers must take place between 8:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. 

  • There are no specific restrictions on the operating hours of other types of cannabis businesses, except they will be subject to operating hours restrictions as non-cannabis businesses of the same type.

Zoning and Distancing Information

Cannabis businesses operating with a city cannabis business permit are allowed within the following Culver City zones:

Cannabis Business Type

Permitted Zones

Dispensary, retail-storefront, and ancillary delivery service

Commercial Neighborhood

Commercial General

Commercial Community

Commercial Downtown

Commercial Regional Retail

Commercial Regional Business Park



Retail-delivery only



Commercial Regional Business Park








Commercial Regional Business Park

Laboratory testing



Commercial Regional Business Park

Manufacturers, distributors, cultivators, laboratory testers, and delivery-only retailers have no distancing requirements, as long as they are located in the appropriate zone.

Zoning Map

The Culver City Zoning Map shows the location of the City's various zones.

Special Distancing Requirements for Storefront Retail Businesses

In addition to being located in the appropriate zone, storefront retail cannabis businesses must be located:

  • At least 600 feet from sensitive receptors, including:

    • K-12 schools

    • Day care centers (includes pre-schools)

    • Youth centers

    • Parks

    • Playgrounds

  • At least 1000 feet from another cannabis retail storefront business

  • Not on corner lots next to residential zones, subject to the exceptions described below.

Sensitive Receptors

Sensitive receptors are defined in the California Health & Safety Code:

Residential Corner Prohibition

Storefront retail cannabis businesses are also prohibited from corner parcels adjacent to residential neighborhoods, except when the residential neighborhood is in Los Angeles, and/or if the corner parcel has its own parking lot that serves as a buffer from the residential neighborhood. The Commercial Cannabis Ordinance is in the process of being updated to reflect this new corner parcel requirement, and must be approved by City Council. This is expected to occur sometime in the first quarter of 2018.

Locations that may meet the zoning and 600 foot distancing requirements for retail storefront cannabis businesses are shown in green and blue on this map (Note that this map has not been updated to account for new prohibitions on corner parcels adjacent to residential streets).

Important Notice: The green and blue parcels shown on the map may be eligible for cannabis retail storefronts. The red parcels may be ineligible. Although the City strives to provide the best information it can, this map is provided for informational and preliminary planning purposes only. The City makes no claims, representations, or warranties (expressed or implied) concerning the validity, reliability, or accuracy of information depicted on this map. The City cannot guarantee the currency of information contained in this map, and decisions regarding the purchase or lease of real property for the purpose of operating a cannabis business should not be based upon information depicted on this map or the data displayed. The City will not approve applications or permits based solely on the GIS data displayed in this map or any subset thereof. Actual field conditions will determine whether or not a cannabis business is located in conformance with applicable laws. All information and data on this map is subject to change without notice.

Additional sensitive receptors may have been identified subsequent to the publishing of this map. Please send any information on additional sensitive receptors that may not be reflected on the map to .

More detailed information about location requirements is contained in the Culver City Cannabis Zoning Ordinance and Commercial Cannabis Regulation and Safety Ordinance.   (Please note that the Regulation and Safety Ordinance has not been updated to reflect the storefront retail corner distancing requirements approved by City Council on February 12, 2018. These ordinance changes are expected to be made during the first quarter of 2018.)

Operating Requirements

Operating requirements for cannabis businesses can be found in the Commercial Cannabis Regulation and Safety Ordinance.

Public Health Requirements

Cannabis businesses are also subject to specific public health requirements.

Personal Cultivation

State law permits the indoor personal cultivation of up to six cannabis plants per residence. The Culver City Municipal Code further regulates personal cultivation of cannabis.

Highlights of Culver City’s personal cultivation regulations:

  • Personal cultivation must take place within a residence, or within a fully enclosed and secured structure. This goes a step further than the State law by requiring that plants not simply be behind a locked gate, but in an enclosed structure in the back yard (e.g. a greenhouse), in order to address both odor and security concerns.

  • The owner of the property must consent (i.e. renters must get the owner’s permission).

  • Lighting must remain below 1200 watts, for the purposes of safety.

  • Gas products cannot be used, for the purposes of safety.

  • Personal cultivation cannot occur in a home’s kitchen, bathroom, or primary bedrooms.

  • Any adverse impacts must be mitigated so that it does not become a public nuisance (e.g. odor).

Special Cannabis Tax

At its meeting on Monday, November 13, 2017, the Culver City Council approved a resolution placing a tax measure on the April 10, 2018 municipal election ballot, asking voters to consider approval of a cannabis excise tax.  The initial and maximum rates to be considered by voters will be:

  • Retail (medicinal): range of 5 -8% with an initial rate of 5%
  • Retail (adult-use): range of 6-10% with an initial rate of 6%
  • Manufacturing: range of 4-6% with an initial rate of 4%
  • Distribution: range of 2-6% with an initial rate of 2%
  • Testing: 1-1.5% with an initial rate of 1%
  • Cultivation: $12 per square foot of canopy

The initial rates would be in place for two years, after which they would be able to be adjusted by City Council resolution. Cultivation rates would be adjusted according to the consumer price index after a two year initial period.

Timeline of City Council’s Adoption of Regulations

 December 11, 2017

 February 12, 2018


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    Jesse Mays
  • Role:Assistant to the City Manager
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