Washington Committee Approves Bill Prohibiting Cities from Banning Medical Marijuana Cooperatives

Legislation that would prohibit cities in Washington State from banning or adding new regulations to medical marijuana cooperatives was passed yesterday through its initial legislative committee.

House Bill 2471 was approved yesterday by the House Commerce and Gaming Committee. The measure, filed by Representative Steve Kirby (D), would make it so that “Counties, cities, and towns are prohibited from enacting any regulations pertaining to medical marijuana cooperatives absent an express grant of authority from the state.”

Under the proposal, state law regarding coops – which allows 10 patients to come together to grow and share cannabis at a share location – preempt all city laws. This is important given that several cities in the state have placed bans or moratoriums on medical marijuana cooperatives.

According to the bill’s official text;

The state of Washington fully occupies and preempts the entire field of regulating medical marijuana cooperatives authorized under RCW 69.51A.250. The state of Washington has sole authority to enact regulatory provisions regarding medical marijuana cooperatives, and cities, towns, and counties are prohibited from enacting regulations pertaining to such cooperatives absent an express grant of authority from the state.

House Bill 2471 is cosponsored by Representatives David Sawyer (D), Cary Condotta (R) and Nicole Macri (D).

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