Friday, January 25, 2013

I-502 Public Forum on Marijuana Producer Licenses Packs City Hall

The public forum on the licensing of marijuana producers and processors had an overflow turnout at Seattle's City Hall on Thursday night, January 24th, 2013. The crowd filled the Bertha Knight Landies room to capacity and extra seating was provided in the city council room upstairs with video viewing of the proceedings. Representatives from the Washington State Liquor Control Board greeted the audience and made it clear this was a 'public forum' - not a formal rules making session - and that they were in 'listening mode'. Sharon Foster, chair of the board, kicked things off by thanking the public for their interest and noting how unusual it was for any meeting to have such robust attendance (indeed, they seemed to have to scramble to arrange the overflow seating area as such heavy attendance was not anticipated).

Crowd at I502 comment meeting in Seatttle

Crowd at I-502 Public Comment Meeting at Seattle City Hall (January 24, 2013)

Members of the WSLCB present seemed ready to take on the daunting task of overseeing the legalization of marijuana for the first time in modern history. They were engaged and respectful of the audience; their efforts to hold the lengthy list of speakers to their respective two minute limit was appreciated by at least this attendee as the session went from 6 PM to after 9:30 PM. Some of the board members present were Sharon Foster, Ruthann Kurose, Chriss Marr, Brian Smith, Samantha Trotter and Pat Kohler.

Key themes emerged throughout the evening. Some of the suggestions were not relevant given the nature of the initiative process and the process for changing provisions requiring a 2/3 legislative approval. The board members pointed this out politely at several parts of the evening. Some key themes emerged, and some points were clarified by the board.

Themes and Major Issues Addressed by Public:
  • "keep it cottage" - don't cut out small scale production operations
  • the whole world is watching
  • address federal issues including federal tax filing guidelines needed
  • regulated system must out compete black market to succeed
  • processor license & tax step  - does it make sense*
  • limiting plant numbers isn't a bad idea, most numbers were ~100-200 plants, up to 1000
  • concerns about not letting major corporate entities dominate the market
  • need for analytical testing of THC, cannabinoids, molds, pesticides
  • banking, insurance and public safety service availability for producers/processors
  • dont limit license #s
  • drug war vetran amnesty for marijuana felons - allow them to participate
  • recycling facilities for toxic grow bulbs
  • being able to smoke in public (bar scenarios or sanctioned locations - not everywhere)
  • more research needed on per-se DUI laws
  • info on interactions with other pharmaceuticals (antidepressants, antipsychotics) requested
  • a special license class type may be needed for research/breeding operations
  • clarification on medical industry status
One of the themes repeated often throughout the evening was brought up by the first public speaker, Richard Dent, whose message was 'don't forget the little guys.' The cottage industry nature of the Washington marijuana scene was evident in the large number of ma-and-pa operations represented at the meeting, which may come to a surprise to some who believed the marijuana market to be dominated by gang and mafia type interests. That was certainly not the impression given by the room tonight. The famous producer Uncle Mickey summed it up when he exhorted the audience to "remember the love - this is not about money."

But, of course it is about money too - and getting along with the Federal Government, and paying taxes and a bunch of stuff less sexy than love. But passion, expertise and a lot of optimism filled the room. There were collective owners, cultivators, medial patients, lawyers, an addiction medicine specialist, entrepreneurs and more than a few veterans of the drug war who wanted to make sure their dedication to the product they loved and their expertise would not be forsaken by the I-502 rules.

Valid concerns about clear guidelines for product testing and labeling products were brought up repeatedly. A number of interests representing testing services and associated groups were in attendance. Brad Douglass from The Werc Shop, a group providing quality control and analytical services to California companies (but contemplating an expansion into Washington) mentioned the scary fact that 20-30% of the product tested by his group found mold - and pesticide residues are a concern to smokers too. He pointed out that some pesticides go right into the smoker at smoking temperatures. Organic certification options were brought up by several speakers throughout the evening.

Concerns about privacy came up several times, both because of personal privacy concerns but also in the lens of a product category that is still against Federal law. Phil Bocel spoke to suggest implementing some of the new security registry technology being developed at University of Washington to protect citizen privacy while also allowing some sort of registry.

Bo Odyssey Recommends the Book "The Emperor Wears No Clothes"

Bo Odyssey, the legendary 'scarf guy' and regular at City Hall meetings made a few comments reinforcing the important role of hemp in American culture, and recommended Ed Rosenthal's book, "The Emperor Wears No Clothes" to the audience. There were several other citizens interested in industrial hemp concerns who spoke.

Concerns about the "inevitable Federal showdown", as Anthony Gibbs, an attorney, so eloquently put it, also came up repeatedly. Late in the evening, a comment was made that the States Attorney General Ferguson is drafting some sort of state lawsuit to defend Washingtonians in some way - details will surely follow.

The wonderful Dawn Darington, a medical marijuana patient advocate from Choice Wellness and a part of 'All Day Live' was there, bringing her indomitable spirit. She pointed out that humans were meant to be assoicated with the marijuana plant - the human brain has receptors for the compounds in cannabis. As Dawn pointed out, our brains have cannabinoid receptors, but we don't have cabbage receptors.

One positive note for producers closely following this was the clarification by board member Chris Marr that the current LCB interpretation of the initiative was that producers who were also processors would not have to pay the 25% tax step between producing and processing, unless the product was further processed. He said this interpretation was being reviewed by the Attorney General.

Note - this is a breaking news story, please email any corrections to stonerlivingblog@gmail.com

 ----------(c) 2013  Stoner Living Blog

5 comments:

  1. OMG Heather you are herb obsessed lol

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  2. افضل شركة نقل اثاث بالمدينة المنورة تساعدك على نقل اثاثك بامان فلا داعى للقلق مع افضل شركة نقل اثاث بجدة

    عزيزى العميل انت من محبى التنقل باستمرار بالتالى انت بحاجة ماسة وضروية الى الاستعانة بالمختصين في نقل العفش خاصة ارخص شركة نقل اثاث بالرياض لان الاستعانة باى من عمالة الشوارع الغير مدربة والتي لا تمتلك خبرة كافية في نقل العفش او الحفاظ علية وليس هذا فقط فقد يؤدى الاستعانة بعمالة الشوارع الى حدوث حالة فقدان وتكسير للاثاث بالتالى التاثير الضار عليك عزيزى العميل

    لا تقلق مطلقاً الان بشأن نقل اي منقولات خاصة بك طالما استعنت بشركة الاول لـ نقل الأثاث في الرياض وخارج الرياض فنحن ليس الوحيدون ولكننا متميزون عن اى مؤسسة أخرى داخل وخارج الدمام وشهرتنا كافضل شركة نقل عفش بينبع
    نقل اثاث بجدة

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  3. هل تفكر بشكل دائم افضل الطرق لنقل الاثاث وكيفية نقل الاثاث لابعد الاماكن دون اى حدوث خدش او تجريح وهل تسعى الى عملية نقل اثاث ولكنك تتردد خشية من حدوث ضرر بالاثاث كل ذلك يجعل الاختيار فى منتهى الصعوبة لذلك هل لك؟
    ان تثق بنا ليس للعمل معنا وانما لارائنا فى كيفية نجاح عملية نقل الاثاث اذا كنت تنوى عملية نقل الاثاث علية التالى
    اولا هل تعلم ان الطرق الحديثة فى الفك والتركيب تساعد فى نجاة الاثاث من عدة احتمالات متوقع حدوثها مثل كسر شركة نقل اثاث من الرياض الى دبى الحليات الموجودة فيه وتلف فى مواد ربط وتجميع الاثاث.
    ثانيا هل تعلم ان التغليف الاثاثى عدة انواع اهمها وافضلها التغليف الفقاعى الذى يحد من عملية تلف الاثاث خاصة فى ابعد المسافات لذلك اذا كنت تعتزم العمل على نقل او تخزين الاثاث استعلم عن التغليف الملائم ولكن ذلك لايقلل شأنا من مواد الغليف الاخرى التى تلزم فلا يجوز الاستغناء عنها فى عملية نقل الاثاث شركة نقل اثاث من الرياض الى جدة منها التغليف الحرارى الناعم الذى يقوم بعملية شد للتغليف الفقاعى بدلا من المواد الاصقة والذى لاغنه عنه فى تغليف الكرتين.
    ثالثا هل تعلم ان الشركة الافضل ليست التى تمتلك كل هذه المقومات فحسب انما هى الشركة التى تتمتع بحسن خلق عمالتها فانت عزيزى العميل لا تمتلك الفكر ولا الوقت الكافى للتركيز مع عمالة النقل اثناء عملية نقل الاثاث.
    والان عزيزى العميل انت مهيا لمعرفة افضل شركة نقل اثاث بالرياض بعد توضيح الامور التى تتوافر فى خدمات نقل الاثاث.
    ولا تنسى ان الشركة الجيدة هى الشركة الاعلى اجرا انما هناك بعض الشركات تقدم اسعار شركات نقل الاثاث بالرياض مميزة جدا وخدمة اعلى من الممتازة.
    شكرا لحسن لكل من قرا الموضوع وعلق عليه بالسلب والايجاب انما كان الهدف منه هو معرفة شركة نقل اثاث بالرياض تتمتع بخبرات كبيرة.

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