OVERVIEW

MuniServices is poised to partner with cities and counties to develop comprehensive strategies to address the current medical marijuana environment, the future environment under the Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act (MMRSA), and the possible legalization environment.

Since the Compassionate Use Act of 1996, local governments have been dealing with the medical marijuana industry on an individual basis. With the passage of the MMRSA in 2015, local governments can now take advantage of the new state laws and regulations to address the evolving medical marijuana industry.

MMRSA creates a formalized structure for the medical marijuana industry, including various types of business categories for dispensaries, manufactures, cultivators, transporters and testers. It also provides registration requirements, business operational rules and environmental protections. MMRSA does provide local governments the ability to determine the scope of the industry allowed within it jurisdictions. However, local governments must now take affirmative action to continue to regulate all aspects of the medical marijuana industry.

MuniServices is working with the California Bureau of Medical Marijuana Regulation during the regulation development process to ensure that local government interests are considered and any issues are addressed.

CANNABIS AUDIT SERVICES, ORDINANCE REVIEW AND LOCAL BALLOT MEASURE ASSISTANCE

MuniServices provides cannabis audit and consultative services to several localities in California. This includes assisting on revenue issues for local ballot measures. MuniServices Deficiency Audit Services are designed to identify entities subject to taxation that are not properly reporting the full amount of tax which are subject to local ordinances. Deficiency Audit Services also identifies entities that are potentially underreporting, or not reporting all applicable taxes. MuniServices reviews the entities records to ensure compliance with the localities ordinances and taxes.

EXPERTISE

MuniServices has extensive experience in the state regulatory process, dispensary audits, and industry business activities including, but not limited to:

  • Cultivation
  • Track and Trace
  • Transportation
  • Mobile Dispensaries
  • Storefront Dispensaries
  • Registration
  • Personal Use
  • Taxes

Our specialized staff has the expertise to assist cities and counties develop a comprehensive medical marijuana policy. MuniServices can provide technical support from the initial discussion stages to the final implementation process. We are experienced in helping to develop local ballot measures, drafting ordinances and estimating revenues and costs. Our medical marijuana audit staff was the first to complete dispensary audits for municipalities in Southern and Northern California. We have also been working with cities as they pursue medical marijuana tax measures.

TEAM

MuniServices has assembled an expert technical staff with many years of experience in the medical marijuana industry.

Legal and Tax Audit
Jonathan Gerth, Esq., Vice President, Cannabis Audit
Contact: JVGerth@REVDS.com

Jonathan Gerth joined MuniServices in 2010. He manages MuniServices Cannabis Audit Division. Jonathan has extensive professional experience in legal, business and accounting environments, including advanced federal, state and local governmental functions and tax compliance. He began his career as a tax attorney and appeals officer for the Internal Revenue Service’s Division of Chief Counsel and Compliance in Dallas, Texas. He later worked for a local private tax firm in Birmingham. Jonathan has held a wide variety of legal roles in MuniServices Tax Audit Department consisting of legal tax support and strategic analysis on compliance audits, tax controversy and advocacy, regulatory compliance initiatives, reforms in examination, assessment and collection practices, and intensive litigation support.

Senior Advisor
Jeff Kolin, Special Technical Cannabis Advisor
Contact:Jeff.Kolin@MuniServices.com

Jeff has worked in both large and small cities and has consistently developed strong long range financial plans and balanced budgets. His expertise includes water and wastewater utilities, public parking enterprises and property management with over 400,000 square feet actively leased at the City of Beverly HIlls. Mr. Kolin also worked closely with the community and City Council in Santa Rosa to develop regulations for medical marijuana dispensaries. He has helped cities stabilize and grow their general funds, prepare for difficult financial challenges as well as manage future growth. As City Manager he developed City Budget Teams that involved Departments in the development and justification of their budget requests under a framework of Strategic Goals and Initiatives developed with his City Councils. He has also developed successful financing plans for a variety of complex capital projects including the construction of a new civic center complex, a 450 megawatt gas fired co-generation power plant, a 50 mile long tertiary treated waste water pipeline and pumping system used to inject water into a geothermal field to create steam for electric power generation and the creation of a variety of park and open space projects in both Southern and Northern California.

Technical Advisor
Larry Bergkamp, Special Technical Cannabis Advisor
Contact: Larry.Bergkamp@MuniServices.com

Larry Bergkamp joined MuniServices in April 2016. Prior to joining MuniServices he served for over 28 years with the State Board of Equalization (BOE). While working for the BOE, he has worked on medical marijuana issues since 2003. Larry was recognized as the leading medical marijuana expert at the agency until his retirement in 2015. Larry was involved in the initial registration of medical marijuana dispensaries for sales and use taxes purposes. He evaluated, developed and implemented medical marijuana administrative policies and audit methodologies to address the unique industry environment. Larry has extensive experience with every aspect of the medical marijuana industry and has an in-depth understanding of the state regulatory process. He has a proven track record of working cooperatively with multiple state agencies and local governments.

Government Relations
Fran Mancia, Vice President, Government Relations
Contact: Fran.Mancia@MuniServices.com

Fran Mancia joined MuniServices in 1996. Fran is responsible for overseeing company Legislative, Regulatory, and Government Relations work at the state and federal level. Fran has a strong working knowledge of local government general fund tax laws and state and federal regulatory and legislative issues that impact local governments. He monitors, analyzes and leads company advocacy efforts related to legislation, state mandates and policies that affect client revenue streams in all general fund tax areas. Fran is a member of the League of California Cities Revenue and Taxation Policy Committee, and was the 2007 and 2008 President of the League’s Partner Program. Fran is also a member of the Board of Trustees of the California City Management Foundation and was recently selected to serve as a member of the Board of Regents of the University of California.

In-House Lobbyist / Legislative and Regulatory Reporting
Brenda Narayan, Director Government Relations/In-House Lobbyist
Contact: Brenda.Narayan@MuniServices

Brenda monitors legislation in Sacramento and Washington D.C. that may have potential impacts to local government. Brenda is the primary author of MuniServices Policy, Regulatory and Legislative updates and is our in-house lobbyist. Brenda is responsible for coordinating the Company’s day-to-day legislative and regulatory activity. Brenda researches, identifies and tracks key legislation for MuniServices on behalf of clients. She provides internal and external leadership insight and concepts in public and community relations activities as they pertain to policy matters. Prior to joining MuniServices, Brenda served as an assistant to the Speaker of the State Assembly. Brenda serves on the Executive Committee for the League’s (business) Partner program and has served numerous terms as a member of the League of California Cities Revenue and Taxation Policy Committee. Brenda is MuniServices Corporate Partner representative to the California State Association of Counties. Brenda was Selected to serve on the United States Conference of Mayors Business Council Steering Committee beginning June 2016.

POLICY UPDATES & PRESENTATIONS

The Government Relations team created a helpful report on medicinal marijuana in California. This report is designed to help local officials better understand some of the complexities surrounding this issue. http://www.muniservices.com/wp-content/uploads/052616_MuniServices_Policy_Update-Cannabis_Framework_Considerations_LegislationResources.pdf

April 10, 2017
MuniServices Cannabis Webinar Audio – Addressing Public Safety Concerns with Legalized Cannabis

April 10, 2017
MuniServices Cannabis Webinar April 2017

November 29, 2016
MuniServices Cannabis Webinar Audio

November 29, 2016
MuniServices Cannabis Webinar 112916

November 16, 2016
Proposition 64 “The Impacts of Recreational Cannabis Webinar Audio

November 16, 2016
Proposition 64 “The Impacts of Recreational Cannabis”

October 1, 2016
Cannabis Legislation, Polling and News, Proposition 64

September 27, 2016
MuniServices Cannabis Webinar Audio

September 27, 2016
MuniServices Cannabis Webinar 092716

September 7, 2016
AB 2679 (Cooley) Cannabis Regulation – Support and Request for Signature

September 6, 2016
MuniServices Cannabis Webinar 090616

September 6, 2016
2016 Cannabis Legislative and Policy Review

ADDITIONAL RELEVANT RESOURCES

Legislative Analyst’s Office, Marijuana Legalization, 2016 Proposed Initiative Statute
http://www.lao.ca.gov/handouts/crimjust/2016/Marijuana-Legalization-052416.pdf

California Department of Food and Agriculture: Medical Cannabis Cultivation Program
https://www.cdfa.ca.gov/is/mccp/

California Department of Pesticide Regulation: California’s Environmental Laws as they Relate to
Pesticide Use

http://www.cdpr.ca.gov/docs/county/cacltrs/penfltrs/penf2015/2015atch/attach1502.pdf

Bureau of Medical Marijuana Regulation Common Questions
http://bmmr.dca.ca.gov/about_us/faq.shtml

California Department of Public Health: Medical Marijuana Program Resources
http://www.cdph.ca.gov/programs/MMP/Pages/default.aspx

BOE Marijuana News
https://www.boe.ca.gov/news/marijuana.htm

League of California Cities
http://www.cacities.org/medicalmarijuana

California State Association of Counties
http://www.counties.org/medical-marijuana

Rural Counties Representatives of California
http://www.rcrcnet.org/issues/marijuana

“Cole Memo” / Federal Enforcement
https://www.justice.gov/iso/opa/resources/3052013829132756857467.pdf

Governor’s Proposed 2016-17 State Budget / LAO Analysis
http://www.lao.ca.gov/reports/2016/3464/med-marijuana-reg-act-051616.pdf

Legislative Analyst’s Office, Governor’s May Revision; Budget Trailer Bill Changes to the Medical Marijuana Regulations and Safety Act
http://www.lao.ca.gov/handouts/crimjust/2016/Medical-Marijuana-Regulation-Safety-Act-052416.pdf

Pros and Cons of Controversial Issues: Compendium of Use Data and Research
http://medicalmarijuana.procon.org/

Marijuana Policy Project
https://www.mpp.org/

American’s For Safe Access
http://www.safeaccessnow.org/california_advocacy