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Accela, the leading provider of civic engagement solutions for the government, has been selected by the State of California to use their licensing software to be deployed for the medical and recreational cannabis industry.

Accela’s platform software solutions and mobile apps have been improving core processes for city, county, state and federal governments while addressing the diverse needs of their constituents. The Accela civic platform includes solutions for land management, asset management licensing and case management, legislative management and more.

Amy Tong, State CIO told a legislative panel on Monday that the software chosen was due to its competitive price quote, and because of it’s ease of use and flexibility, this swift platform will address  California’s mandated January 1, 2018, go-live deadline.

“We decided to choose that product based on its track record of being used in both the industry for licensing as well as other state entities that have chosen this particular product to implement a licensing capability,” Tong said.

Currently, the Department of Technology is in negotiations with a systems integrator that will come aboard to install the software.

This isn’t the first time Accela’s software will be used to help automate medical and recreational cannabis licenses. In 2015 Denver, Colorado began implementing Accela’s software. Denver’s government understands the importance of updating their software and saw the Accela’s software could produce reports in minutes as opposed to days or weeks.  

The IT systems- licensing and “track and trace” is required by statute under the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MCRSA) of 2015. With Prop 64 passing by California voters in 2016, officials will also plan to build additional functionalities within the licensing system to implement legalizing recreational use of cannabis by adults. MCRSA legislation set an aggressive January 1st, 2018 date to launch the licensing system.

With the aggressive launch date, many officials have doubt that the software will be ready in time for the deadline. State Sen. Jerry Hill said the deadline is swiftly approaching and he noted there are many differences in the two laws.

Lori Ajax, Chief of the Bureau of Medical Cannabis Regulation, explained that although the software will launch in January, there will be some missing functionalities such a renewals. They also will not be able to grant everyone with a license on Day One. However, they will have the authority to issue temporary permits. Tong, the State CIO stated they are moving towards having the capability on January 1st, 2018 to accept applications for licenses through their web portal, processing requests could take longer.

With the City of Denver, Colorado, being widely recognized for their innovative approach to technology with the Accela software, California’s decision to implement Accela is the right direction as we gear up for recreational cannabis adult use.

Read Accela’s update on the announcement. Click here.