SAN JOSE (KPIX) — Recreational marijuana users in Santa Clara County can no longer make in-store or curbside purchases, according to the county’s new stay-at-home order.
The tougher restrictions for dispensaries went into effect on April 1 and, while the cannabis shops were still considered essential and could remain open, they could no longer offer in-store purchases for customers without a medical marijuana card or doctor’s recommendation.
The order also prohibits suppliers from cultivating or distributing recreational marijuana.
“Consumers are wildly confused and wildly disappointed,” said Caliva CEO Dennis O’Malley.
Jacob Pena, who waited in line outside Caliva for an hour to buy medical marijuana, said he had no idea about the order’s restriction and was turned away.
“I’m upset about it, I’m upset about it,” Pena said. “They said I need a medical card, I didn’t bring it, I’ve been coming here without a medical card for five years.”
The order does say, however, that recreational users can still get marijuana delivered to their doors.
But O’Malley said delivery service right now is in high-demand, some dispensaries don’t offer it and delivery services, like well-known Eaze, have stopped service in the area.
Caliva’s delivery orders are so overwhelmed that O’Malley said they can’t offer same-day service, which he said hurts consumers who need it as soon as possible.
“So while the county has said delivery is an option the reality is most dispensaries are not able to deliver,” O’Malley said.
Those who now come into dispensaries in the Bay Area’s most populated county have medical marijuana cards or doctor recommendations. According to O’Mally, 122 have medical marijuana cards out of the nearly 2 million of the county’s residents.
“Consumers in Santa Clara county have not needed that for three years,” he said. “Their questions are, ‘How do I get a card if the state systems are shut down’ and they don’t want to overwhelm the doctors’ offices to go get a recommendation.”
He said the order is hurting people like Pena who depend on medical marijuana.
“I have it for my pain in my neck and my shoulder, it’s called medical marijuana, I do need it,” Pena said.
“It’s hurting the people who look to a plant-based solution for pain, sleep and anxiety,” O’Malley said. “This is medicine for people.”