New Haven County Cannabis

Is Cannabis Cultivation Legal in New Haven County?

Cannabis cultivation for medical and adult use in New Haven County is legal pursuant to the State of Connecticut’s 2012 Palliative Use of Marijuana Act or Public Act 12-55, and 2021 Responsible and Equitable Regulation of Adult-Use Cannabis Act (RERACA) or Public Act 21-1. The law mandates that if 10% of the voters in a municipality ask for a referendum on whether to allow cannabis businesses within their boundaries, voting must be done. The respective stances of New Haven County municipalities are as follows:

Allowing adult-use cannabis businesses:

  • Ansonia
  • Beacon Falls
  • Bethany
  • Branford
  • Derby
  • Naugatuck
  • New Haven
  • West Haven

Disallowing adult-use cannabis businesses:

  • Milford
  • Prospect

Moratorium in place regarding adult-use cannabis businesses:

  • Cheshire
  • East Haven
  • Guilford
  • Hamden
  • Madison
  • Meriden
  • Middlebury
  • Orange
  • Oxford

No current information on the municipality’s stand regarding adult-use cannabis businesses:

  • North Branford
  • North Haven
  • Seymour
  • Southbury
  • Wallingford
  • Waterbury
  • Woodbridge

However, RERACA mandates all municipalities to authorize personal cannabis growing at home by medical marijuana cardholders aged at least 18 starting October 1, 2021, and by any adult aged at least 21. A qualified individual may grow only up to three immature and three mature plants. The maximum number of plants that can be grown in the same residence where several qualified adults reside is 12. Cannabis must be cultivated indoors, beyond the view of others, and for personal use only. Personal cultivators must ensure that children do not have access to cannabis plants or byproducts.

Companies must first submit an application to the Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection (DCP) for just one of the following licenses in order to cultivate cannabis for profit in the New Haven County municipalities that allow it:

The adult-use cannabis micro-cultivator license only permits cannabis growing in areas ranging from 2,000 to 10,000 square feet. Subject to DCP permission, a maximum expansion to 25,000 square feet can be requested. If the company wishes to develop further, it can apply for a cultivator license. Payment requirements include a $250 initial lottery application cost, a $500 provisional application charge, and a $1,000 yearly licensing fee.

The adult-use cannabis cultivator licensee is permitted to engage in cannabis growing in areas of at least 15,000 square feet and up to 10,000 square feet. An initial $1,000 application lottery cost, a provisional application fee that costs $25,000, and a licensing fee that costs $75,000 a year must be paid.

Present medical cannabis producer licensees are qualified to request for conversion to an enhanced producer license to also cultivate cannabis for adult consumption. New medical cannabis producer licenses will no longer be given.

Licensed cannabis cultivators of all types are permitted to grow their plants outdoors, but they have to keep these hidden from view by the public.

Is Cannabis Manufacturing Legal in New Haven County?

The manufacturing of medical and adult-use cannabis in New Haven County is legal in compliance with Public Act 12-55 and Public Act 21-1 but restricted to the eight municipalities that permit it.

To be able to manufacture medical and adult-use cannabis products commercially in New Haven County municipalities that agree to it, businesses must first apply to the DCP for just one of the following licenses:

The holder of an adult-use cannabis product manufacturing license may manufacture, package, and label cannabis products. The fees include the initial application price for the lottery which is $750, the $5,000 provisional application fee, and the $25,000 annual license fee.

The holder of an adult-use cannabis food and beverage manufacturer license may produce foods and beverages that are cannabis-infused or have incorporated cannabis as an ingredient. The fees to be paid are the initial lottery application charge of $750, the provisional application fee of $5,000, and the yearly license fee that costs $25,000.

A single serving of any food or beverage containing medical and adult-use cannabis can only have up to five milligrams of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). An edible cannabis package that holds several servings cannot exceed 100 THC milligrams in its total contents. Beverages must be supplied in single servings only.

Is Cannabis Retail Legal in New Haven County?

The retail selling of medical and adult-use cannabis in New Haven County is legal as mandated by Public Act 12-55 and Public Act 21-1 but only in the eight municipalities that agreed to it.

Companies are required to obtain either an adult-use cannabis retailer license or an adult-use cannabis hybrid retailer license from the DCP in order to sell medical and adult-use cannabis and cannabis products in the municipalities of New Haven County that will have them.

A licensed adult-use cannabis retailer may only sell adult-use cannabis to people who are at least 21 years old. On the other hand, the licensed adult-use cannabis hybrid retailer is permitted to provide both medical cannabis to people who have medical cannabis cards and adult-use cannabis to people who are 21 or older. Both licenses have a $500 application lottery charge, a $5,000 provisional application charge, and a $25,000 final yearly licensing cost.

The DCP is not awarding any further licenses for medical marijuana dispensaries. Holders of medical marijuana dispensary licenses may request a conversion of their licenses to adult-use cannabis hybrid retailer licenses.

A DCP report states that the retail selling of adult-use cannabis and cannabis products by licensed retailers started on January 10, 2023. Up to five ounces of medicinal cannabis may be bought by medical marijuana cardholders in one or more transactions each month. According to the DCP update, non-cardholders aged 21 and upwards may now only purchase up to one-fourth ounce at each transaction.

Only persons with a medical marijuana card may purchase cannabis in pill, sublingual, capsule, tablet, or suppository form. Individuals aged 21 and older, as well as medical marijuana cardholders, may buy any other type of cannabis or cannabis products, like cannabis-infused foods and drinks and others.

Is Cannabis Delivery Legal in New Haven County?

The delivery of medical and adult-use cannabis all across New Haven County is legal because RERACA forbids any municipality from disallowing it. Only DCP-licensed adult-use cannabis delivery services or adult-use cannabis transporters may, however, do so.

Delivery to patients with valid medical marijuana cards or adults 21 years of age or older of cannabis and cannabis-related products purchased from licensed retailers may be done by adult-use cannabis delivery services licensees. A $250 lottery application cost, a $1,000 provisional application fee, and a $5,000 final licensing annual fee must be paid by the licensee.

The licensed adult-use cannabis transporter may only convey cannabis and cannabis products among licensed cannabis enterprises. The licensee must also pay comparable fees.

RERACA gives currently operating medical cannabis dispensaries the authority to deliver to medical cannabis cardholders their medical cannabis purchases for up to 30 days from the time that the first five adult-use cannabis delivery service licensees start operations.

How to Get a Medical Marijuana Card in New Haven County

Through the Medical Marijuana Program of the State of Connecticut, residents of New Haven County who are not in jail may apply for a medical cannabis card. Applicants must be under the care of an eligible licensed doctor, physician assistant, or advanced practice registered nurse for the qualifying debilitating ailments.

Adult patients must be diagnosed to have any of the following diseases:

  • Terminal illness
  • Huntington's Disease with movement disorders
  • Tourette Syndrome
  • Chronic Pain of at least 6 months from a chronic condition
  • Chronic pancreatitis
  • Vulvodynia and vulvar burning
  • Intractable neuropathic pain unresponsive to standard medical treatments
  • Interstitial cystitis
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Median Arcuate Ligament Syndrome (MALS)
  • Muscular dystrophy
  • Sickle cell disease
  • Degenerative spinal disorders with chronic neuropathic pain
  • Ehlers-Danlos syndrome with chronic pain
  • Osteogenesis imperfecta
  • Hydrocephalus with intractable headache
  • Neuropathic facial pain
  • Post-laminectomy syndrome with chronic radiculopathy
  • Intractable headache syndromes
  • Severe rheumatoid arthritis
  • Postherpetic neuralgia
  • Uncontrolled intractable seizure disorder
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Fibromyalgia with spasticity or neuropathic pain
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Complex regional pain syndrome, Type 1 and Type II
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
  • PTSD
  • Crohn's disease
  • Cachexia
  • Irreversible spinal cord injury with intractable spasticity
  • Damage to the spinal cord with intractable spasticity
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Severe psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis
  • Epilepsy
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Glaucoma
  • Cancer

Patients below 18 must be diagnosed with one of the following illnesses:

  • Terminal illness
  • Chronic pancreatitis with recalcitrant pain
  • Osteogenesis imperfecta
  • Severe epilepsy
  • Tourette syndrome unresponsive to standard medical treatment
  • Intractable neuropathic pain unresponsive to standard medical treatments
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Muscular dystrophy
  • Uncontrolled intractable seizure disorder
  • Irreversible spinal cord injury with intractable spasticity

A Business Network Account must be created by the eligible healthcare professional on the online registration system of the Medical Marijuana Program. The patient's email address and primary phone number, and those of any needed caregivers, must be logged in.

For patients who are younger than 18, two qualified healthcare practitioners must be included, one of whom should be responsible for the youth's medical care for the diagnosed ailment. The online certification must be issued by one of the qualified health providers. The other one must issue a certification letter to the patient's parents or guardians declaring that the use of medical cannabis serves the patient's greatest interest.

The patient must set up a Business Network Account with the same email address to finish the online registration. This requires submitting documents to prove identity and state residence, as well as information concerning any necessary caregiver. A $100 patient registration fee and a $25 caregiver registration fee are also required.

The adult patient or caregiver will be sent the medical cannabis card through the postal system. Cards will not be issued to minor patients since their caregiver must purchase their medical cannabis for them. The caregiver's card must be used and based on it, the licensed retailer will look up the patient's information in the registry.

The DCP may be contacted through these channels for more information:

Phone: (860) 713-6066


How Has Cannabis Legalization Impacted the Economy of New Haven County?

Adult-use cannabis sales in Connecticut totaled $5.1 million from January 10 to January 31, 2023, according to the DCP, with medical cannabis sales totaling $8.2 million. Only cannabis for adult use is subject to tax.

Adult-use cannabis and cannabis products are taxed in three ways:

  • a 10%–15% tax that depends on the THC level of the product
  • a state sales tax of 6.35%
  • a local state sales tax of 3% in the town or city where the purchase was made

Local sales tax revenue from the eight municipalities that allow adult-use cannabis businesses will benefit New Haven County.

The Effects of Cannabis Legalization on Crime Rates in New Haven County

In the State of Connecticut, medical cannabis was legalized in 2012, and adult-use cannabis in 2021.

The Connecticut Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection Crimes Analysis Unit’s report on Crime in Connecticut Arrest Trends states that across the state, there were 10,338 drug abuse violation arrests and 9,276 DUI arrests in 2012. This is the earliest data available. In 2021, this decreased to 3,597 drug abuse violation arrests and 6,173 DUI arrests statewide.

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