FBI allows County to run state and federal background checks for cannabis businesses

Most background checks require a livescan of the applicant. (Contributed photo)

COUNTY — Those waiting for their San Luis Obispo County cannabis business license background check may not have to wait much longer for the required criminal background checks to be completed.
The County of San Luis Obispo Sheriff’s Office was recently approved by the FBI to run fingerprints for cannabis businesses through the State Department of Justice. That means the criminal background check for cannabis business license applicants can include not just local criminal history checks, but also state and federal criminal histories. The state and federal criminal history checks begin this month.  
In May 2018, the SLO County Board of Supervisors gave the Sheriff’s Office authority to conduct these expansive background checks when reviewing applications for cannabis business licenses. The Sheriff’s Office has been awaiting FBI approval to submit fingerprint background checks for cannabis business license applicants.
As part of the County’s cannabis regulations, a cannabis-related business operating in the unincorporated areas of SLO County must apply for a County business license. But a business license cannot be issued until a land-use permit is approved and the applicant passes a criminal background check conducted by the Sheriff’s Office.
For more information, review the County’s Cannabis Business Readiness Guide.

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