WA Legislation to End Dispensaries, Reduce Patients’ Rights, Passes Senate

WashingtonMedicalMarijuana_Shutterstock State’s full Senate, with a 36 to 11 vote, has given approval to Senate Bill 5052, sending it to the House of Representatives for consideration. Its passage in the House will send it to Governor Jay Inslee, the last necessary step for it to become law.

Senate Bill 5052 would combine the medical and recreational cannabis systems by shutting down all currently operating dispensaries in the state, renaming the Liquor Control Board the Liquor and Cannabis Control Board, and by allowing recreational cannabis retail outlets to apply for a medical cannabis endorsement indicating they’re knowledgeable in the medical use of cannabis.

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Bipartisan Bill to Strengthen Medical Cannabis Law Filed in Washington

Washington State Representatives Luis Moscoso (D-Mountlake Terrace), Sherry Appleton (D-Poulsbo) and Maureen Walsh (R-Walla Wall) have introduced legislation to create a system of licensing and regulation for medical cannabis dispensaries, and to finallyLos Angeles City Council Votes To Ban Medical Marijuana Dispensaries provide arrest protection for qualifying patients.

According to a press release sent today by Rep. Mosoco, House Bill 2058 is identical to legislation that passed both the House and Senate in 2011, before being largely vetoed by then-Governor Christine Gregoire due to concerns about federal intervention.

“With the legalization of recreational marijuana and subsequent changes in federal law and enforcement, we have a real opportunity to create a better medical marijuana system for Washington,” says Moscoso. “It’s time we established clear and consistent regulations that preserve patient rights.”

Read moreBipartisan Bill to Strengthen Medical Cannabis Law Filed in Washington