CORE Capital Background

In August 2018, the Sacramento City (City) Council established the Cannabis Opportunity Reinvestment and Equity (CORE) Program to reduce the barriers of entry into the cannabis industry for individuals who were negatively impacted by the War on Drugs. The CORE Program is dedicated to providing access to cannabis business development resources, training and mentorship, financial assistance and support services to ensure that opportunities in the evolving cannabis industry are open to those individuals impacted by the disproportionate enforcement of cannabis-related crimes in the City of Sacramento. 

In April 2019, the City contracted with two facilitators to provide CORE participants with cannabis business development resources, training, mentorship, and support services. The City also waives the Business Operating Permit (BOP) application fees and gives priority processing on CORE participants Conditional Use Permit (CUP) and BOP applications.  One unmet need that CORE participants’ have identified is access to capital to enter into the cannabis industry. Given the federal prohibition on banking services for cannabis businesses and the lack of access to generational wealth that most CORE participants have experienced, the inability to access start-up funds has been a significant impediment to cannabis business ownership.

With grant funds from the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) for local equity cannabis programs, the City has created the CORE Capital loan program to provide no-interest loans to CORE participants to fund their cannabis businesses at various stages of the permit application process, as well as provide operating and expansion capital for businesses that have been issued permits to operate.REIMBURSEMENT FUNDINGCORE participants who had applied for a CUP and one or more BOPs to operate a cannabis business have been eligible for up to $25,000 per BOP in reimbursable cannabis business expenses. The $1.1 million dollars in funding for this reimbursement program were awarded to the City by the Bureau of Cannabis Control’s Local Equity Grant program. In an effort to assist CORE participants who were not able to benefit from the Reimbursement program, the maximum funding amount of a CORE Capital loans will be reduced by the Reimbursement program funding previously received by an applicant.

Reimbursement Funding

CORE participants who had applied for a CUP and one or more BOPs to operate a cannabis business have been eligible for up to $25,000 per BOP in reimbursable cannabis business expenses.  The $1.1 million dollars in funding for this reimbursement program were awarded to the City by the Bureau of Cannabis Control’s Local Equity Grant program. In an effort to assist CORE participants who were not able to benefit from the Reimbursement program, the maximum funding amount of a CORE Capital loans will be reduced by the Reimbursement program funding previously received by an applicant.