Washington State Kine Bud Control Board releases proposed rules for recreational marijuana entrepreneurs

Screen shot 2013-05-16 at 3.59.44 PMIt’s hard not to be silly about it. We’re assuming the same kind of giddy, childish humor was on display at the end of liquor prohibition, too. Thursday, the needs-a-new-name Washington State Liquor Control Board released a timeline and 46 pages of draft rules for licensing, sales and accounting in a nascent recreational marijuana economy. We’ve included the entire draft document and the board’s timeline for implementation, below.

The draft proposals includes everything from licensing requirements for a legal marijuana dealership to the new logo and information box to be used on WA State-certified weed packaging.Screen shot 2013-05-17 at 10.17.48 AM

You know things are for real when the graphic designers get involved.

Reaction from entrepreneurs, advocates and opponents is already, um, rolling in.

  • “Washington residents and out-of-staters could buy an ounce of tested, labeled marijuana, seven days a week, up to 20 hours a day, in state-regulated stores under draft rules for a new legal-pot system released Thursday by the Liquor Control Board.” — Seattle Times
  • “The draft rules call for a ban on retail sales of hash, hash oil, and other concentrates.This means that legal tokers will still need to obtain their hash on the black market or, if they prefer a gray market, obtain a medical cannabis authorization, usually for $75-200.” — The Stranger
  • “On taxes, each sale from a grower to a processor to a retailer to a customer-— including those involving middlemen in that chain — will result in a 25 percent tax to the state.” — Crosscut
  • “Among the preliminary regulations: They want to track marijuana from ‘seed to store.’ They’d put a cap on the number of retail outlets in each county, but not on the number of licensed pot growers or processors.” — AP
  • “Similar to the state’s liquor laws, a point system will be used to gauge whether criminal backgrounds should bar you from growing and selling marijuana; if you have eight points or more on your record, no selling pot.But the liquor board will exempt two misdemeanor convictions of marijuana possession within the last three years.” — Seattle Weekly

The rules govern many fine points of the industry that will come into play when shops are opened in the neighborhood including issues like procedures for disposing of waste. Sorry dumpster divers, “flowers, trim and plant material from any lot of marijuana that fails quality assurance testing required by RCW 69.50.348 must be rendered unusable prior to leaving a licensed processor’s facility.”

As with liquor license applications, marijuana licensing will include public notice giving the community opportunity to lodge any necessary complaints:

Per RCW 69.50.331, the board shall send a notice to cities and counties, and may send a notice to tribal governments or port authorities regarding the marijuana license application. The local authority has twenty days to respond with a recommendation to approve or an objection to the applicant, location, or both.

Meanwhile, kids, consider chemistry:

each lab must employ a Scientific Director responsible to ensure the achievement and maintenance of quality standards of practice

The proposed rules also cover what security will be required at a licensed retail operation:

1) Display of Identification Badge: All employees in licensed premises shall be required to hold and properly display an identification badge issued by the licensed employer at all times while in a licenses premises.

(2) Alarm Systems: At a minimum, each licensed premises must have a security alarm system on all perimeter entry points and perimeter windows. Motion detectors, pressure switches, Duress, Panic and Hold Up alarms may also be utilized.

(3) Surveillance System: At a minimum, a complete video surveillance and recording system for control areas within licensed premises to ensure control of the area. The requirements include image acquisition, video recording, management and monitoring hardware and support systems.

As the draft licensing rules are pounded out, local municipalities are shaping zoning rules for the new stores and production facilities. Capitol Hill’s pot entrepreneurs continue to adapt and position themselves for the next steps. Meanwhile, the spectre of federal intervention continues to lurk. The board plans to begin accepting applications for licenses by September following summer public hearings:

  • Mid-May Send draft rules to stakeholders for comment

  • Mid-June Board files CR 102 that includes draft rules for all three licenses

  • Late-July Public hearing/s on rules for all three licenses

  • Late-August Rules become effective

  • September WSLCB begins accepting Producer, Processor and Retail license applications

  • December 1 WSLCB begins issuing Producer, Processor and Retail licenses to qualified applicants

You can provide feedback via rules@liq.wa.gov. The full draft ruleset, is below.

Initial Draft Rules 05-16-13

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8 thoughts on “Washington State Kine Bud Control Board releases proposed rules for recreational marijuana entrepreneurs

  1. So I have some questions, since a bowl of marijuana contains as much tar as a pack of cigarettes, does marijuana have the potential to cause cancer or emphysema like cigarettes, in combination with poor diet or other carcinogens?

    Would the state be responsible if someone sewed for poor health, like in cigarette companies, or are there warnings that marijuana can can cause cancer, use at your own risk?

    Are employers aloud to pee test on a legal substance, i mean you cant drink on the job, but you can after work, can you smoke pot after work? Is there a drug test for weed that says the user is under the influence at the time the test is taken? Rather than the current test that shows positive if you have used in the last month.

    With the no smoking laws in establishments, will there be weed smoking allowed in certain cafes, etc. I think there are still hooka bars where you can smoke inside. Is the rule it has to be a smoking place only, no food, no alcohol served? Or will there be cafe’s where you can have a sandwich and some coffee, along with a bowl?

    • Employers may mandate that you not smoke tobacco or drink even while you’re not at work. I expect those same employers would ban marijuana use.

    • I’m not sure where you’re getting your information but many of your comments are grossly inaccurate.

    • First, ow, your spelling is so bad it hurts.

      Second, your numbers are crazy inflated. Cannabis, to my knowledge, has about 1.5x the amount of tar as tobacco. It certainly doesn’t have the same amount of tar as 20 cigarettes. Although it has more tar gram per gram than tobacco, you smoke less of it to get the desired effect. If you were to smoke the same quantity of cannabis as you would in one cigarette, you would not be trying to do anything productive for the rest of the day. That is certainly much more than one bowl.

      Carcinogenicity is a little more complex. Cannabis smoke contains carcinogens, but it also contains compounds which are known to inhibit tumour growth. People who smoke just cannabis have been found to have slightly lower rates of lung and other cancers than nonsmokers. Then again, people who smoke cannabis and tobacco were found to have even higher rates of lung cancer than just tobacco smokers. It’s also not been found to affect lung health in moderate use. Also, if you vaporize or ingest it this mostly becomes irrelevant.

      Employers can test for any substance they want, but for a lot of jobs they mainly screen for pot as a liability thing, it’s not really for safety reasons. A number of businesses lifted pot testing after the initiative passed (and I imagine most haven’t), but it’s up to the business.

      The point about the health warnings is a good one, I’m surprised they didn’t put that in there. The state wouldn’t be liable for the shit you do to yourself, but you’d think they’d just put a label saying “warning: may be carcinogenic if smoked.” just to be sure. I’m guessing this will come up in the next round of hearings since these are only draft rules.

  2. From The Stranger: “The draft rules call for a ban on retail sales of hash, hash oil, and other concentrates.This means that legal tokers will still need to obtain their hash on the black market or, if they prefer a gray market, obtain a medical cannabis authorization, usually for $75-200.”

    I’m glad to see that pro-pot publications and activists are now admitting that all you have to do to get a medical marijuana authorization is to pay for it. This has been true all along, and many non-qualifying people get authorizations. It’s a sham system that needs to be better regulated, and hopefully the Liquor Control Board will do just that as they move forward with the rules governing recreational pot.

  3. According to the rules I’ve seen (the Seattle Police Department had a bulletin on their site) pot smoking will automatically be prohibited in all places where smoking is prohibited by law, so there will not be restaurants that legally allow pot smoking. Also, it is still illegal to smoke pot in public, so that by itself would also prohibit smoking in places like that unless the law changed, and thank heavens for this! I don’t care what people do on their own, but as an asthmatic who also does not want to be exposed to airborne drugs, I want to be able to leave the house without having to breathe pot smoke. Please keep it at home or at private parties! (the only legal option, even with the law changes)

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