Three upcoming changes in the state marijuana laws

OLYMPIA — The state Legislature approved Senate Bill 5131 revising state marijuana regulations, and Gov. Jay Inslee signed it into law on May 16.

The 39 pages of new regulations don’t go into effect until July 23 though, in order to give the state Liquor and Cannabis Board time to create new fact sheets for the state’s cannabis industry.

SB 5131 was requested by the Liquor and Cannabis Board and sponsored by Sen. Ann Rivers, R-Vancouver; and Sen. Steve Conway, D-Tacoma.

According to authorities, in addition to revisions and wording changes, there are three important new rules.

Tribes and ports

The board must give notice of applications for renewal or applications not only to incorporated cities, towns or counties, but also to Tribal governments and port authorities if the application for a license is located on property owned by the Tribe or port. And those bodies have have the right to file written protests.

Advertising

Apparently, sign spinners are out. The rules say cannabis businesses cannot “use or employ a commercial mascot outside of, and in proximity to, a licensed marijuana business. A ‘commercial mascot’ means a live human being, animal, or mechanical device used for attracting the attention of motorists and passerby so as to make them aware of marijuana products or the presence of a marijuana business. Commercial mascots include, but are not limited to, inflatable tube displays, persons in costume, or wearing, holding or spinning a sign with a marijuana-related commercial message or image …”

Giving it away

Perhaps the biggest change, authorities say, is that individuals will be able to legally give marijuana to others under certain conditions.

Section 15 of the bill states that “the delivery by a person 21 years of age or older to one or more persons 21 years of age or older, during a single 24 hour period, for noncommercial purposes and not conditioned upon or done in connection with the provision or receipt of financial consideration … is not a violation … of Washington state.”

The product must be in the original packaging and cannot be more than one-half ounce of usable marijuana or eight ounces of marijuana-infused product in solid form (think brownies) or 36 ounces of marijuana-infused liquid product or three and one-half grams of marijuana concentrates.

The exchange must not be done in view of the public and the item shared must be in its original packaging.

— Terryl Asla is a reporter for the Kitsap News Group. He can be reached at tasla@soundpublishing.com.

ONLINE: Read SB 5131 at http://app.leg.wa.gov/billsummary?BillNumber =5131&Year=2017

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