WA State Initial Draft Cannabis Rules Released

On May 16, 2013, the Washington State Liquor Control Board (LCB) released their initial Draft Rules for I-502 implementation, which can be viewed in full or downloaded by following this link.

Remind Me - What's I-502?

I-502 (State Initiative 502) is of course the voter-approved legalization of Marijuana & Marijuana-infused products for sale & use inside the State of Washington - and opens the door for many entrepreneurs to participate in what many see as the huge cash crop of the future.

There will be 3 main Cannabis business types - Producers (growers), Processors (those that create edible Cannabis products, for example), and Retailers.

When Will Final Rules Be Released?

The WA State LCB is taking suggestions until June 10, 2013 - a bit less than a month since the Draft Rules were published.

If you want to make suggestions, the LCB is providing 3 methods:

Email:  rules@liq.wa.gov
(WSLCB prefers this method, by the way)

Snail Mail your suggestions to:
Rules Coordinator
Liquor Control Board
P.O. Box 43080
Olympia, WA 98504-3080

Fax: 1-360-664-9689

What Do The Draft Rules Cover?

In short, the draft rules cover Marijuana licenses & the application process for business wanting to obtain a Cannabis business license, requirements that Cannabis businesses must adhere to, and the reporting that businesses will have to comply with.

Being a compliance training business, we took careful note of the fact that Cannabis businesses in the State of Washington will indeed be required to provide annual employee training on State Marijuana Regulatory Compliance issues & laws, and employers will be required to maintain training records.

Summary of the Draft Rules

Just in case you don't want to read all 46 pages of Regulatory Compliance-ese, here's a snapshot of the salient points:

  • 15 Definitions of terms are provided
  • Marijuana qualification & application process for producers, processors, & retailers
  •  What persons or entities may qualify for a Marijuana business license
  • What criminal history might prevent an applicant from receiving or keeping a license
  • Marijuana license fees for producers, processors, and retailers.
  • Security & transportation requirements
  • Signage & packaging & labeling requirements
  • Marijuana servings & transaction requirements
  • What Marijuana Regulations violations will cause licsense rejection or revocation
  • Taxes, reporting, waste disposal, standardization scales, & quality assurance
  • Employee training & record keeping requirements
    *Note that failure to comply with annual Employee training & record keeping can trigger fines or license suspension or revocation

There's quite a lot of specificity in the Draft Rules and while the above summary gives you a good overview, it's not meant to be a complete outline of all the important areas - feel free to read the rules for yourself here if you prefer.

So, What's Next?

Barring the Federal Government suing WA State to block implementation of I-502, shortly we'll see finalization of the Draft Rules released.

Stay tuned, we'll keep you up to date.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us.

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