Proposed Cannabis Business Rules Approved by WSLCB

The Washington State Liquor Control Board today has approved - and clarified - the proposed rules to implement Initiative 502 (aka, I-502) for businesses to obtain licences to legally engage in the production, processing and retailing of Marijuana in WA state.

In a press release sent out to the media today, July 3 2013, the WSLCB made some important announcements & clarifications - in the press release, Board Chair Sharon Foster said:

“Public safety is our top priority. These rules fulfill the public expectation of creating a tightly-regulated and controlled system while providing reasonable access to participation in the market.”

She also added:

“While the overall response to our initial draft was quite positive, we received quality input from local governments, law enforcement, industry members, the prevention community and many others that we incorporated and further improved the rules.”

Here are the key elements noted in the WSLCB press release:

Key Public Safety Elements
Public safety is the top priority of the Washington State Liquor Control Board.

·         All grows must meet strictly controlled on-site security requirements;

·         Strict surveillance and transportation requirements;

·         Robust traceability software system that will track inventory from start to sale;

·         Criminal background checks on all license applicants;

·         Tough penalty guidelines for public safety violations including loss of license;

·         Restricting certain advertising that may be targeted at children.

Key Consumer Safety Elements
The proposed rules provide a heightened level of consumer safety that has not existed previously.

·         Packaging and label requirements including dosage and warnings;

·         Child-resistant packaging for marijuana in solid and liquid forms;

·         Only lab tested and approved products will be available;

·         Defined serving sizes and package limits on marijuana in solid form;

·         Store signage requirements to educate customers.


And here's the updated timeline for this year:


July 03 2013                  Proposed rules filed with Code Reviser (CR 102)

August 6-8, 2013           Public hearings on proposed rules

August 14, 2013            Rules adopted

September 16, 2013      Rules become effective

September 16, 2013      Begin accepting applications for all three licenses (30-day window)

December 1, 2013         Rules are complete (as mandated by law)

Dec. 2013 / Jan. 2014    Begin issuing producer, processor and retailer licenses


Also addressed in the press release:

Public Hearings
Public hearings on the proposed rules are being scheduled in four locations across Washington August 6 – 8, 2013. The locations are tentatively scheduled for Olympia, Seattle-area, Ellensburg and Spokane. The WSLCB will soon post the dates and locations on its website at

Note to Stakeholders: A series of summary documents including: proposed rule highlights; answers to frequently asked questions, and others are also available on the WSLCB website at


Here's a link to where you can download a .pdf file of the most recent proposed rules:

All of this brings us one step closer to December 2013, the stated deadline for I-502 final rule implementation which will grant those who meet the requirements the ability to apply for and obtain a license to grow (produce), process, or retail Marijuana in the State of Washington.

What kind of Cannabis Business are you planning to start? Let us know in the comments.

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