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Opponents File Lawsuit Over Washington I-502 Fiscal Note


washington state medical marijuanaWashington State Office Of Financial Management Is Being Challenged Over I-502 Preliminary Fiscal Note

There are few issues on TWB that are debated as hotly as Washington State’s I-502. I would go as far as saying there are no other articles that draw the emotion and debate like I-502 articles. Steve Sarich is often found at the heart of those discussions. While Steve Sarich and I don’t always see eye to eye, I always enjoy reading his comments and I’m very happy to have him here on TWB.

Something that is no doubt going to generate quite a bit of debate is the lawsuit that was recently filed by Steve Sarich and other opponents of I-502 against the Wasington State Office of Financial Management (OFM), who is required to file a report that assesses the revenue, cost, expenditures and indebtedness of an initiative to the State of Washington.

The lawsuit claims “the OFM has failed to deliver on its obligation under state law to provide voters with an accurate picture of what the initiative will cost. Sarich says obvious expenditures like training police to deal with marijuana DUIs and defending the state from predictable legal challenges from the feds have been purposefully left out of the equation.” Sarich said according to Seattle Weekly.

The current numbers that have been thrown around range from $564 to $606 million in the first year after I-502’s implementation. Those are numbers that don’t sit well with I-502 opponents like Mr. Sarich.

“How can you say the impact to the state is going to be zero?” Sarich said according to Seattle Weekly. “I don’t know you can do that. It’s a lie. What we want them to do is their job. I firmly believe [the OFM is]in violation. We want a new fiscal note. We’re absolutely not going to give this up. [The estimates the OFM has provided] are so far off it’s incredulous.”

Civil liberties attorney and I-502 supporter Alison Holcomb noted state law gives the Office of Financial Management until Aug. 10 to issue its opinion. She said she remains “confident the agency will meet its deadline.” according to the Seattle Post Intelligencer.

Click this link to see the preliminary fiscal note generated by the OFM for I-502


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Johnny Green


  1. Whoever these weedtards are need to move on in life and worry about having quality patients and staff. Or get left in the dust, wasting money on stupid greed.

  2. You are incorrect. I-502 cannot be modified and the time for legislative adoption long past and it was not amendable even then. I-502 cannot be modified until 2 years after passage.

    As for your opinion of I-502 and the DUI-C, I would say that you are equally informed. For more information, the factsheets at the New Approach Washington are helpful.

  3. The state legislature cannot adopt I-502 at the point. They had their opportunity and decided to take no action…so that’s not an option.

    The legislature is not allowed to alter a voter passed initiative for at least two years, so the DUID provision will definitely be there….probably forever. After two years of DUID’s for marijuana, the police will point to all the arrests for “stoned driving” and the legislature won’t dare touch it.

  4. I believe the state legislature could take I-502 and adopt it prior to the November balloting, and line item anything they choose. If they would adopt this with an amendment eliminating the addition of the DUI aspect, those monies to teach officers new techniques is eliminated as well. It is illegal to drive right now if you are under the influence of marijuana, there need not be a specific test as set in I-502. If an officer can’t tell if you are driving impaired, you’re probably driving fine.

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