WA to Begin Accepting Applications From Dispensaries Next Month

The Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board (LCB) announced Wednesday that it will begin accepting applications for recreational marijuana licenses from existing dispensaries on Oct. 12, with no cap on the number of permits to be issued.

The new licensing process is the latest step in the state’s plan to regulate its longstanding medical marijuana industry, which in the past hasn’t been subject to any comprehensive rules.

“If phase one was implementation of the recreational marijuana marketplace then (this) marks the beginning of phase two – the public process of aligning the medical marijuana system with the existing recreational system,” LCB Chair Jane Rushford said in a statement.

Officials expect that only about half – or possibly even less – of the estimated 800 unregulated dispensaries that currently exist in the state will meet the requirements to win licenses.

Any dispensaries that wish to remain in business need to obtain a state license by next July.

The LCB has said it will give licensing priority to applicants that applied for a recreational license by July 1, 2014, or were either operating or employed by a dispensary prior to Jan. 1, 2013. Applicants that have a history of holding a business license and paying taxes will also have a leg up.

Once the Department of Health finishes its rules, dispensaries will also be able to apply for medical certifications to keep selling MMJ as well as adult-use cannabis.

One comment on “WA to Begin Accepting Applications From Dispensaries Next Month
  1. Clark_G on

    MMJ retail dispensaries allowed to join but not their suppliers? This is classic WSLCB cranial incontinence; they say they want to bring on expertise to help medical consumers but these businesses will have to buy from the existing rec system, leaving their product lines behind to start from scratch. Expertise cultivating medical strains will remain out in the cold, unable to be licensed, it’s so dumb. It’s like saying “Hey everybody! Celebrity chef Bobby Flay will make all the food for our charity dinner but he can only use K-Mart cookware and Swanson tv dinners in an EZ Bake oven!” Increase grow canopy from 70% to 100% to fill demand, yippee. Are there many producers able to utilize even 70% of their tier currently? That’s a rare bird, it’s difficult and capital intensive. Of course we hear “We’re way past our arbitrarily self assigned 2 million square foot canopy number, we’re helpless!” SB-5052 does not forbid WSLCB from opening a new license window for producers, what gives?

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