Legislation to Legalize Personal Marijuana Cultivation Filed in Washington’s House and Senate

Companion bills that would legalize the personal cultivation of marijuana for those 21 and older has been filed in Washington State’s House of Representatives and Senate.

The legislation, which has bipartisan support in both chambers of the legislature, would allow anyone 21 and older to grow up to six marijuana plants at a private residence, for personal use. If three or more individuals 21+ are living in the same residence they could grow up to, but not more than (regardless of the number of residents), fifteen plants.

Despite the current marijuana possession limit in the state being one ounce, the bills would allow those growing marijuana to possess over this amount if their harvest is larger.

Read moreLegislation to Legalize Personal Marijuana Cultivation Filed in Washington’s House and Senate

Washington’s Liquor and Cannabis Board’s Slow Data Reporting Leaves Status of State’s Marijuana Market Unknown

Reporting on Washington State’s legal marijuana market is slow-going, with data released by the Liquor and Cannabis Board being months behind other states.

Washington’s Liquor and Cannabis Board, which oversees the state’s legal marijuana industry, operates a neat and fairly comprehensive Marijuana Dashboard which has detailed statistical information regarding marijuana sales, licensing and production. The problem is that the Board seems be incredibly slow at collecting data, and/or reporting it.

The latest monthly sales data for Washington’s marijuana industry was released by the Board roughly two months ago. This was data for October, 2017. This means that data for November, 2017 and onward is unreported and completely unknown by anyone outside of the Board (or maybe it’s even unknown to them). By contrast, in Oregon and Colorado, states which have their Department of Revenues overseeing their marijuana markets, sales and tax data is reported through February of this year. This means that they’re four months ahead of Washington’s available data, and just one month behind current time (this makes March the only finished month where data isn’t yet available, though it will be soon).

Read moreWashington’s Liquor and Cannabis Board’s Slow Data Reporting Leaves Status of State’s Marijuana Market Unknown

Bill Allowing Financial Institutions to Work with Marijuana Industry Passes WA Senate Committee, Already Passed Full House

Legislation to explicitly give permission to financial institutions to provide services to licensed marijuana businesses has been approved by the Washington State Senate Committee on Financial Institutions and Insurance Committee.

The committee voted 5 to 1 today to pass House Bill 2098, which was filed by Representative David Sawyer (D) and is cosponsored by Representatives Brandon Bick (R), Steve Kirby (D) and Cary Condotta (R). The measure, which passed the full House of Representatives last month in an 82 to 12 vote, would provide “immunity from state criminal prosecution to a financial institution providing financial services to licensed marijuana businesses and qualifying patients, health care professionals, and providers under medical marijuana laws.”

For purposes of the bill, “financial institution” is defined as “a bank, trust company, mutual savings bank, savings and loan association, or credit union authorized to do business and accept deposits in Washington under state or federal law. Financial institutions are generally regulated by the Department of Financial Institutions.”

Read moreBill Allowing Financial Institutions to Work with Marijuana Industry Passes WA Senate Committee, Already Passed Full House

WA: Over $142 Million in Legal Marijuana Sold in October, New Single-Month Record

There was $142,045,630 in legal marijuana and marijuana products sold in Washington in October, according to data released by the state’s Liquor and Cannabis Board.

The $142 million in marijuana sold in October marks a single-month record, besting the previous high of $133.5 million in August. The state garnered nearly $30 million in taxes from October’s sales. Overall for fiscal year 2018 – which began on July 1st – the state has garnered $120 million in taxes from $534 million in marijuana sales. This puts the state on track to top fiscal year 2017; the state brought in $314.8 million in taxes from $1.37 billion in sales.

The $142 million in marijuana sold in October in Washington is slightly higher than the amount of marijuana sold in Colorado during the same period; $127 million according to the state’s Department of Revenue.

Read moreWA: Over $142 Million in Legal Marijuana Sold in October, New Single-Month Record

WA: Bill Prohibiting Use of Public Resources to Assist Federal Marijuana Crackdown Receives Public Hearing

Legislation to protect Washington State’s legal marijuana industry from federal intrusion received a public hearing today in the state’s House Finance Committee.

House Bill 2124 “Prohibits the use of public resources to assist the federal government in any activity that might impede or interfere with revenue to the operating budget pursuant to Washington state’s regulation of marijuana and marijuana-related products as prescribed by the laws of the state of Washington.” The measure “Provides that a public employee who knowingly violates this prohibition may be subject to disciplinary proceedings.”

The measure, filed by Representative David Sawyer (D) along with a bipartisan coalition of six other lawmakers, received a public hearing today in its initial committee. Representative Sawyer spoke in favor of the bill, stating that although a large number of people signed up to speak and express their support, he asked them to withhold from doing so in order to respect the committee member’s time. No one spoke in opposition to the measure.

Read moreWA: Bill Prohibiting Use of Public Resources to Assist Federal Marijuana Crackdown Receives Public Hearing

WA: New Bipartisan Bill Would Legalize Personal Marijuana Cultivation

Legislation to legalize the personal cultivation of marijuana for those 21 and older has been filed in Washington’s House of Representatives.

Although marijuana has been legal in Washington to purchase and possess for several years now, cultivating marijuana is illegal without being a licensed grower. New legislation filed by Representatives Brian Blake (D) and Cary Condotta (R) would change this, allowing anyone 21 and older to grow marijuana for personal use.

Specifically House Bill 2559Authorizes an adult age 21 or over to possess six or less marijuana plants and up to 24-ounces of useable marijuana harvested from the plants”. The measure specifies that “no more than six marijuana plants may be grown or possessed on the premises of a single housing unit under the authorization, regardless of the number of residents living on the premises.”

Read moreWA: New Bipartisan Bill Would Legalize Personal Marijuana Cultivation

Washington State Bill Would Legalize Medical Marijuana Deliveries

Legislation that would legalize the delivery of marijuana and marijuana products to qualified patients has been introduced in Washington’s House of Representatives.

The measure, House Bill 2574, was introduced by Representative Shelley Kloba (D) along with a bipartisan coalition of 11 other lawmakers. The bill would establish “a medical marijuana delivery endorsement to the marijuana retailer’s license that authorizes the holder to provide marijuana home delivery services to qualifying medical marijuana patients age 21 or over, or to designated providers”, and “Authorizes qualifying medical marijuana patients to place delivery orders for marijuana products with a qualifying retailer over the telephone or by Internet.”

The proposal “Requires that medical marijuana deliveries be made to the same qualifying adult that placed the order and that the delivery be made only to a private residence, hotel, motel, or other lodging business”, and “Requires that delivery persons be trained regarding age and identity verification, as well as verification that the patient is registered in the medical marijuana database.”

Read moreWashington State Bill Would Legalize Medical Marijuana Deliveries

WA: Legal Marijuana Sales Surpass $1.1 Billion in First 9-Months of 2017

Legal marijuana sales continue to thrive in Washington State, with sales for 2017 already matching sales for all of 2016.

In total there was $1,101,853,539 in legal marijuana sold in Washington from January 1st of this year, through the end of September, according to the state’s Liquor and Cannabis Board. This already matches the $1.1 billion sold in all of 2016. The $1.1 billion sold this year has resulted in roughly $242 million in taxes for the state. By comparison, Colorado has sold $1,118,207,832 in legal marijuana through the same period, indicating that both markets are roughly the same size.

Since the beginning of legal marijuana sales in Washington (July 1st, 2014), there has been over $2.7 billion in marijuana and marijuana products sold throughout the state. From these sales the state has garnered roughly $650 million in taxes.

Read moreWA: Legal Marijuana Sales Surpass $1.1 Billion in First 9-Months of 2017

Washington Governor Signs Bill Legalizing Marijuana Sharing and Distribution of Seeds/Plants to Patients

Washington Governor Jay Inslee signed a bill into law yesterday that makes several positive changes to the state’s marijuana law.

Included in Senate Bill 5131 is the legalization of sharing marijuana from one individual aged 21 and older to another individual also at least 21 years of age. Up to this point sharing marijuana – including passing a joint or bong – has remained a felony punishable by up to five years in prison, despite the fact that marijuana possession was legalized by voters in 2012.

The new law also allows licensed producers of marijuana to legally sell marijuana seeds and plants to medical marijuana patients 18 and older, which are allowed to cultivate cannabis even though it remains illegal for personal use. However, the new law also directs Washington’s Liquor and Cannabis Board to study the feasibility of allowing everyone 21 and older to grow marijuana.

Read moreWashington Governor Signs Bill Legalizing Marijuana Sharing and Distribution of Seeds/Plants to Patients

Washington House Unanimously Passes Bill to Regulate Marijuana Edibles Same as Other Foods

A Washington bill requiring state officials to regulate marijuana-infused food products the same as other foods has been passed unanimously by the state’s House of Representatives.

Marijuana cupcakes. (Photo: Jason Redmond/Reuters)

House Bill 1462 has also been approved by the Senate Agriculture, Water, Trade & Economic Development Committee. The proposal “Requires the department of agriculture to regulate marijuana-infused edible processing the same as other food processing under the state food processing act.”

It also “Requires a marijuana processor that processes, packages, or makes marijuana-infused edibles to obtain an annual marijuana-infused edible endorsement.”

Read moreWashington House Unanimously Passes Bill to Regulate Marijuana Edibles Same as Other Foods