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Regulations on Commercial Cannabis Activities in the City of Tracy

All commercial cannabis businesses, including cultivation (indoor only), distribution, manufacturing, microbusiness, retailer – non-storefront (delivery only), retailer – storefront (dispensary), and testing laboratory, are required to obtain a Cannabis Business Permit, a Conditional Use Permit (CUP) from the Planning Commission, a State License issued by the Bureau of Cannabis Control, and must be in compliance with all applicable state and local laws and regulations pertaining to cannabis business and the commercial cannabis activities and land use and zoning requirements prior to operating in the City of Tracy.



September 1, 2020


September 30, 2020, 3:00 p.m.


There are two ways to submit an application, listed below. Electronic submissions will not be accepted. Note that application fees are due at the time of submittal and are nonrefundable (refer to "FEES" below for accepted forms of payment).

  1. Mail the application materials and payment. You can do so via the U.S. Postal Service, Federal Express, or UPS. Address the materials to:

    City of Tracy
    Planning Division
    333 Civic Center Plaza
    Tracy, CA 95376
    Attn: Peggy Beeuwsaert

    Please note that, in order for your application to be accepted, the City must receive your application and payment by no later than 3:00 p.m. on September 30, 2020. The City will not accept postmarks. Late applications will be rejected.

  2. Submit the application materials and payment in person. For the safety and health of the public and our employees, City Hall is currently closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Thus, in-person application submittals will only be available by appointment. Please call (209) 831-6433 to arrange a date and time for submittal. 

Applicants must hand-deliver five hard copies of all materials, and a complete electronic copy (PDF format) of all materials on a USB thumb drive (i.e. flashdrive), and payment at the time of application submittal. All applicants must submit, with the exception of site or building plans, all hard copy materials single sided in a simple 3-ring binder of 8.5 x 11 inch sized paper, in size 12 font. Each set of application materials will be submitted in a separate binder; thus, the applicant should submit five binders plus one USB thumb drive along with payment. No applications in a "Spiral" or "Comb" type of binding, or stapled documents will be accepted. For larger size hard copy materials such as site or building plans, submit sheets no greater than 30x42 inches, folded, collated, unstapled, and secured together with rubber bands.

Please refer to the Cannabis Business Permit Application Procedures and Guidelines and Ordinance 1287 for specific information with regard to scoring criteria and the materials required to be submitted as part of your application. The City's regulations on commercial cannabis activities, including land use restrictions, were codified via Ordinances 1277, 1278, 1287, and 1293, and were adopted by the Tracy City Council via Resolution 2020-137 on July 21, 2020.  All of these documents can be found in the right-hand column of this page.



The following fee is due at the time of application submittal, is nonrefundable, and must be paid with a certified check, cashier's check or money order made out to the “City of Tracy”. Please note that your application will not be accepted unless this fee is paid.

Cannabis Business Permit Application Fee:$10,800.00
Total Amount Due at Time of Application: *$10,800.00

* Note: Each Applicant and Owner will need to submit an online Cannabis Business Employee/Owner Background Application, along with the $300.00 Background Investigation fee (plus any fingerprinting fees). Applicants must present proof of Background application submittal and fee payment to the Planning  Division by no later than 3:00 p.m. on September 30, 2020. See "Background Investigation" below for additional information.

A Cannabis Business Permit fee in the amount of $3,900.00 will be due at time of issuance should a Cannabis Business Permit be granted.


Other fees include, but are not limited to: Background Investigation and fingerprinting fees, Conditional Use Permit application fee and any other applicable Planning application fees or Building Permit application fees, Business License fee, and Cannabis Employee Permit fees. All of these fees are nonrefundable.

Renewal fees for the Cannabis Business Permit Application, Background Check, Cannabis Business Permit, Business License, and Cannabis Employee Permit are due each year, including fees for any associated Live Scan services.

Please refer to Chapters 6.36 and 10.08 of the Tracy Municipal Code (as amended via Ordinances 1277, 1278, 1287, and 1293), the Cannabis Business Permit Application Procedures and Guidelines (as adopted via Resolution 2020-137), and the Planning Division fee schedule for additional information. These documents can all be found in the right-hand column of this page.


Applicants for cannabis business permits will be required to consent to fingerprinting and a criminal background investigation. The first step is for the Applicant and each Owner to complete a Cannabis Business Employee/Owner Background Check Application form. The initial fee for the Background Investigation is $300.00 per Applicant/Owner. Live Scan fingerprinting will be arranged through the Tracy Police Department later in the background process. Additional DOJ and FBI fingerprint processing fees, anticipated to be up to $100 per Applicant/Owner, will be due at the time of fingerprinting, as part of the background process.

Please note that proof of submittal of Cannabis Business Owner Background Check Application(s) and payment of fee(s) for the applicant and each owner must be emailed to the Planning Division at PlanningAdmin@CityofTracy.org by no later than 3:00 p.m. on September 30, 2020 in order for the Cannabis Business Permit application to proceed. Applicants and Owners who do not meet criminal history eligibility requirements will be disqualified and their application will be deemed disqualified.

For additional information regarding the background process, please contact the Planning Division at (209) 831-6433 or PlanningAdmin@CityofTracy.org. If you have questions with regard to the Live Scan process specifically, please contact the Tracy Police Department at (209) 831-6565.


California state law allows local governments to regulate commercial cannabis activities in their respective jurisdictions.  On December 3, 2019, the City Council of the City of Tracy adopted Ordinance 1277 establishing regulations for commercial cannabis activity in the City of Tracy and Ordinance 1278 establishing zoning and locational requirements on commercial cannabis activity in Tracy.

Cannabis Ordinances & Regulations 

Information related to regulations on commercial cannabis activity and zoning requirements on commercial cannabis activity can be found in the right column of this page or by accessing the City’s Municipal Code


On June 27, 2016, the State enacted the Medical Cannabis Regulatory Safety Act (MCRSA) to protect residents’ use of medical cannabis and to establish regulations for personal and commercial medical cannabis activity. On November 8, 2016, California voters passed Proposition 64, the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA) to regulate personal and commercial non-medical marijuana activity. On January 1, 2018 the State began issuing temporary commercial licenses for medicinal and non-medicinal cannabis. Many California cities and counties are now implementing local cannabis regulations.


· July 25, 2018: An ordinance to allow up to two medical cannabis non-storefront (i.e. delivery only) dispensaries to operate in the City’s industrial locations was prepared by City Staff; it was introduced to the City of Tracy Planning Commission. 

· September 18, 2018: The proposed cannabis ordinance and operational regulations was presented to the Tracy City Council for further discussion.

· February 5, 2019:  At the City Council meeting, staff was directed to draft a regulatory ordinance that 1) allows all cannabis businesses except cultivation; 2) allows the location of these businesses in industrial and possibly commercial and other areas of the City; and 3) restricts the number of dispensaries to two with the possibility of more. Council further directed staff to research best practices from other agencies and draft an ordinance with the highest regulatory standards with an emphasis on cost recovery.

· August 13, 2019: A Special City Council meeting was held to discuss potential regulations for commercial cannabis activity and provide direction to staff. The workshop had two primary areas of discussion: land use regulations and cost recovery models. City Council provided direction to staff related to locational requirements for various cannabis business types. At that meeting, it was established that storefront retail cannabis businesses (dispensaries) would be permitted in commercial and industrial areas of the City, and that the more industrial-in nature cannabis businesses (distribution, indoor cultivation, micro-businesses, testing laboratories, manufacturing) would be permitted in industrial areas. All businesses would be required to first obtain a Conditional Use Permit from the Planning Commission in order to operate. Full details regarding what happened at this special meeting can be found by watching the Council Meeting video or reading the discussion summary.

· September 3, 2019: Special City Council meeting was held to further discuss land use considerations and begin the policy discussion on the commercial cannabis activity regulatory permit. The City Council provided further direction on types of business activities, including outdoor cultivation and volatile manufacturing. The City Council determined that the regulatory ordinance for commercial cannabis activities should allow for four permits for storefront retail cannabis businesses (dispensaries). In addition, the Council discussed and provided direction for specific regulations that are above the minimums established by State cannabis regulations which include Proposition 64 and implementing laws and regulations such as Medicinal and Adult Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (“MAUCRSA”). Full details regarding what happened at this special meeting can be found by watching the Council Meeting video or reading the discussion summary

· October 1, 2019:  A Special City Council meeting was held to highlight the sections of the ordinance that incorporated the Council’s prior direction. To review those details, please read the agenda.

· November 5, 2019:  At the Regular Council Meeting, the Council introduced Ordinances amending Chapter 6.36 if the Tracy Municipal Code regarding Commercial Cannabis Activity and amending Section 10.08.3196 of the Tracy Municipal Code regarding establishing Zoning and Location Requirements for Commercial Cannabis Businesses

· December 3, 2019: At a Regular Council Meeting, the City Council adopted Ordinance 1277 and Ordinance 1278  establishing regulations for commercial cannabis activity in the City of Tracy and Ordinance 1278 establishing zoning and locational requirements on commercial cannabis activity in Tracy.

· January 21, 2020:  At a Regular Council Meeting, the Council considered and discussed draft procedures and guidelines (“Guidelines”) for the cannabis business permit application process. Staff requested Council direction in order to finalize these proposed Guidelines for cannabis business permit applications. The City’s regulatory ordinance on commercial cannabis activities, contained in Chapter 6.36 of the Tracy Municipal Code (“TMC”), requires that the City Council adopt, by resolution, the procedures to govern the cannabis business permit application process (TMC Section 6.36.050(a).).  The Council directed staff to return to Council with revised draft Guidelines.  Full details regarding what happened at this Regular Meeting can be found by watching the Council Meeting video.

• April 21, 2020: At a Regular City Council meeting, the Council provided further direction on the requirements to include on a Cannabis Business Permit Application. A draft of the Application Procedures and Guidelines (Guidelines) was presented to the Council for consideration and discussion, which resulted in additional direction to produce the Guidelines. This draft identified that there will be two phases to the process including an Eligibility Review and Evaluation of Community Benefit Contribution before the issuance of a Cannabis Business Permit. After receiving this additional direction, staff modified the Guidelines for the Council to consider for adoption at the May 19, 2020 City Council meeting.

• May 19, 2020: City staff returned to Council with a revised copy of the Cannabis Business Permit Application Procedure and Guidelines (Guidelines) per the direction provided on April 21, 2020. Council discussed the draft Guidelines and decided to revise sections with respect to the local applicant criteria by providing zip codes as an identifier, and giving more weight to social equity considerations and property owner acknowledgment requirements for applicants seeking consideration based on social equity factors. Staff will return to Council with an updated draft of the Guidelines for further discussion and consideration by the Council.

• July 7, 2020: City staff returned to Council to further discuss the procedures and guidelines and introduce Ordinance 1293 to amend Chapter 6.36 of the Tracy Municipal Code to further refine the cannabis cultivation permit requirements.

• July 21, 2020: Ordinance 1293 was adopted by Council; and, following additional comments from the public and ensuing discussion, the Cannabis Business Permit Application Procedures and Guidelines were finalized and adopted via Resolution 2020-137.

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