Frequently Asked Questions


​What are the current County regulations regarding cannabis?

The Board of Supervisors reviewed the ad hoc Medical Marijuana Advisory Committee recommendations on changing the method in which most personal use medicinal cannabis cultivation violations are enforced from a criminal to a civil process (e.g. civil fines if individuals do not comply with the Ordinance rules and abatement by the County).

On November 7, 2017, the Board of Supervisors approved the recommendations from the ad hoc Medical Marijuana Advisory Committee.

For information on the new enforcement rules and the rules on personal medical cannabis cultivation in El Dorado County please click on the following link:

Personal Cannabis Cultivation

To see a general overview of the civil enforcement process steps that take place if an individual does not follow the cannabis rules in El Dorado County please click on the following link:

Code Enforcement Process


The Board of Supervisors reviewed the ad hoc Medical Marijuana Advisory Committee recommendations on commercial licenses in El Dorado County. The ad hoc committee recommended that the Board of Supervisors pass a temporary ban on commercial cannabis licenses in El Dorado County except for the medical marijuana dispensaries that are open under Ordinance 4999. At this time, the medical marijuana dispensaries that are open under Ordinance 4999 will be able to operate during the temporary ban provided that they comply with Ordinance 4999 and forthcoming regulations.

On December 12, 2017, the Board of Supervisors approved the recommendation of the ad hoc Medical Marijuana Advisory Committee with an urgency Ordinance temporary ban on commercial cannabis licenses in El Dorado County except for the medical marijuana dispensaries that are open under Ordinance 4999.

​What is the El Dorado County ad hoc Medical Marijuana Advisory Committee?

The El Dorado County Board of Supervisors created the ad hoc advisory committee at its March 15, 2016 special meeting regarding medical marijuana. During the special meeting, the Board of Supervisors received an overview on the current medical marijuana laws and reports from County departments, stakeholder groups and the public on how medical marijuana policy decisions could affect them. At the conclusion of the meeting, the Board of Supervisors created the ad hoc Medical Marijuana Advisory Committee to collect more information on different medical marijuana topics (e.g. cultivation, dispensaries, compliance, etc.).

The Committee was comprised of two members of the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors. The committee members collected information at each of the meetings from different stakeholder groups, members of the public, and County departments regarding each meeting topic (e.g. taxation, compliance, cultivation, etc.). All ad hoc committee meetings were open to the public.

The County did not conduct meetings regarding medical marijuana in 2015 due to the major statutory overhauls undertaken by the State of California that resulted in the Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act (MMRSA), signed in October 2015 and amended in February 2016. The County decided to wait before pursuing updated medical marijuana Ordinances to ensure that any updates were consistent with the new State laws and regulations.

The ad hoc Medical Marijuana Advisory Committee met on nine occasions:

  • May 2nd meeting was on the structure of the future meetings

  • June 20, 2016 meeting was on cultivation

  • June 27, 2016 meeting was on niche medical marijuana businesses (e.g. dispensaries, nurseries, etc.)

  • August 22, 2016 meeting was on compliance procedures regarding medical marijuana rules

  • September 19, 2016 meeting was on taxation and fees for medical marijuana

  • December 12, 2016 meeting was on conceptual changes to the medical marijuana enforcement procedures (e.g. moving towards a civil enforcement process)

  • March 27, 2017 meeting was to discuss the County's administrative decisions for Proposition 64

  • October 12, 2017 meeting was to discuss recommendations to the Board of Supervisors on the new civil enforcement process

  • October 23, 2017 meeting was to discuss a recommendation on commercial licensing (both medical and recreational)

During the November 14, 2017 Board of Supervisors meeting, the Board voted to dissolve the ad hoc Medical Marijuana Advisory Committee. The committee had achieved its goals by bringing recommendations to the Board of Supervisors on cannabis following its 2016 and 2017 meetings.

​What is the El Dorado County ad hoc Cannabis Committee?

On December 12, 2017, the Board of Supervisors created the El Dorado County ad hoc Cannabis Committee. The new committee is comprised of two members of the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors. The committee members will be collecting information on commercial cannabis topics (e.g. dispensary rules, commercial cultivation, distribution, etc.).

The purpose of the committee is to study and create ballot measures for different cannabis commercial uses tied to to taxation.

Look for information on the meetings in 2018.

​Did I miss the registration deadline for a commercial cannabis license in El Dorado County?

​No, El Dorado County has a temporary ban on commercial cannabis licenses.

​I live in a residentially zoned area. Can I cultivate cannabis for personal medical use?

It depends on what zoned lot you live in and other factors (e.g. setbacks on your lot, screening of the marijuana, etc.).  The following are the zone designations and the amount that is allowed to be grown if a person or people have valid medical card(s) or recommendation(s) from a doctor:

  • Lots zoned: R1, R20,000, R1A, R2A and R3A – these lots can grow up to 200 square feet

  • Lots zoned: RE and RL – these lots can grow up to 400 square feet (must have two medical cards or prescriptions from two different individuals – please Ordinance 5000 for additional rules) 

  • Lots zoned: AG, FR, LA, and PA – these lots can grow up to 600 square feet (must have three medical cards or prescriptions from three different individuals – please Ordinance 5000 for additional rules) 

The cultivation of more than 200 square feet is only allowed as a collective cultivation as provided in subsection 2.E of Ordinance 5000.  

In addition, please remember there are other factors that need to be followed (e.g. setback room, screening, inability of the public to see the cannabis, residing on the lot where the medical cannabis is grown, etc.). 

For information on whether  you can cultivate cannabis for medical use on your property please click on the following link  (please have your APN number):  http://edcapps.edcgov.us/Planning/parceldatainfo.asp

If you do not know your APN, please go here:  http://main.edcgov.us/CGI/WWB012/WWM400/A

Outdoor cultivation for recreational (non-medical) use or commercial cultivation, either outdoors or indoors, is not authorized in El Dorado County.

For information on how to obtain a Medical Marijuana Identification Card through El Dorado County, click on the following link:

Medical Marijuana Program

​What does the passing of Proposition 64 mean in El Dorado County?

  • Personal Recreational Use

Adults 21 years and older are able to use recreational cannabis within a private residence and grow cannabis indoors (up to 6 plants per residence) for personal use. Cannabis use is still prohibited in public and areas where smoking tobacco is prohibited.

  • Commercial Recreational Cannabis Cultivation, Manufacturing or Sales Operations

Commercial cannabis activities require a license from the State Bureau of Cannabis Control, the Manufactured Cannabis Safety Branch or CalCannabis Cultivation Licensing, which will not grant a license without a local jurisdiction's approval. Currently, El Dorado County has a temporary ban on all commercial licenses with the exception of the medical dispensaries open under Ordinance 4999. No commercial cultivation of any kind is allowed in El Dorado County.

​Do I need a state license to grow cannabis for personal use?

MAUCRSA and AUMA (Proposition 64) allows adults over 21 to grow cannabis indoors for personal non-medical use (up to six plants per residence) without a state license. Only six plants are allowed to be grown indoors per residence. All plants and harvested cannabis in excess of one (1) ounce must be kept within the person's private residence, in a locked space, that is not visible from a public place.

In addition, if you have a valid medical card or a medical prescription from a doctor, individuals can cultivate cannabis for personal medical use under El Dorado County Ordinance 5000. This does not require a state license. For the cultivation rules under Ordinance 5000 please click on the following link:

Amended 4999 and 5000 County Ordinances (Medical Marijuana)

​Can I sell homegrown cannabis plants or products to others?

​No, Proposition 64 does not allow the sale of homegrown cannabis, whether whole plant, clippings, clones, or any product derived from any part of the plant.

​Can I smoke or consume cannabis in public places?

​No. El Dorado County has not authorized smoking or consuming medical or recreational cannabis in any public place. Smoking or consuming medical or recreational cannabis is also prohibited under state law where smoking tobacco is prohibited, which includes but is not limited to hallways and lobbies of apartment buildings and hotels, on the street, in schools, amusement parks, public parks and places of business usually open to the general public.

Additionally, consumption or smoking of cannabis is prohibited within 1,000 feet of a school or youth area while children are present, except on private residential property provided the smoking is not detectable by children.

​How much cannabis can I buy for recreational use?

​Under Proposition 64, adults 21 years and older can possess, transport, give away or purchase up to one (1) ounce (28.5 grams) of cannabis and up to eight (8) grams of concentrated cannabis.

There is no location in the unincorporated area of El Dorado County to purchase adult use (recreational) cannabis. Delivery of cannabis to your residence in the County is prohibited.