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Recreational Cannabis Store Licenses In Jeopardy In Washington State


washington state marijuana regulationsLegal cannabis sales have been occurring in Washington State since early July. Implementation of a legal cannabis licensing system took seven months longer to roll out in Washington compared to Colorado. As of the writing of this article, there is still just one legal recreational cannabis store in Seattle.

It appears that some licenses in Washington could be in jeopardy, further delaying outlets from opening. Per King 5:

Washington state is warning dozens of people who applied to run legal marijuana shops that their chance of getting a license is in jeopardy.

The Liquor Control Board on Wednesday began sending letters to 56 businesses around the state, giving them 60 days to schedule an interview with a licensing inspector.

The board says most of those businesses scored lucky numbers in lotteries conducted in April – putting them in a good position to win a coveted marijuana retail license – but they haven’t moved forward with their applications since then.

There are various reasons why the applications haven’t been followed through on. Perhaps some people changed their minds, or didn’t have the resources to actually move past the licensing phase. Others maybe had problems finding a facility to fit their needs. Who knows? Applications that are denied in a couple of months will create new opportunities for new applicants that want to apply and pick up the license.


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Johnny Green


  1. They try to get so tricky with these taxes they lay on cannabis. So tricky that it’d garner the EXACT same result by charging an income tax on them. I agree 100%

  2. The NO TAX came about BECAUSE the State dismantled our 2 previous versions of our medical marijuana Bill. Actually AZ passed MMJ BEFORE Cali did! Due to the legislature doing that, citizens in AZ passed “The Voter Protection Act” which keeps the legislature from deviating ANY from the direct language in the proposition! In order to even amend our law it takes a “Super Majority” in the legislature to even AMEND the law. The state screwed themselves as far as taxes go on our Medical Program. They can’t even amend it for something that would be in the betterment of the act itself. You’ll NEVER get a Super Majority in the legislature ever!

    I can also tell you that so far, NONE of the dispensaries are in the black!

  3. They both have consumer taxes: “The Cannabis Tax”

    That is retarded. Just tax their income. If they don’t want to pay taxes, they can charge lower prices.

  4. The people in AZ are making more than those in WA. They arn’t paying taxes.

    We could simply have income taxes. Then consumers wouldn’t be footed with the bill of funding society.

  5. A Wash grower said he “needed” $9/g to be able to do business. With a 25% Cannabis tax and a 33% income tax, it comes out to $4.45/g. That is the same price OMMP growers in Oregon get with no Cannabis tax ($2000/lb) and most of that is black marketed with no income tax or regulatory burden.

    The problem is that a lot of people would rather be self centered and take 3 illegal dollars vs 1 legal dollar with the other 2 going to group funding (taxes).

    Capitalism appears to be the driving force for legalization, not liberty per se.

  6. They had people get in the lottery with the hopes of being able to SELL their rights to a store or be a “straw owner”. It backfired on them though

  7. It looks like the greed will be in all states for MMJ or recreational. The black market will still be prospering because it’s cheaper than legal medical or otherwise. The black market risk is less too (now with all the legal cannabis abounding almost everywhere). Hell, once you have possession, ur safe. Whose to say you didn’t obtain it legally…(unless they were there when U purchased) which is highly unlikely. After time I think the businesses will discover that the high pricing is NOT going to work well for very long because they’ll be losing a lot of business to the black market. Just another growing pain of a new and vigorous industry.

  8. Yah having my legal oz is so bad…. Washington’s bill was written to start slow and small. Do I want something better, of course. Do I still buy from the black market like a hypocrite, yes 800 bucks insane. They will get the market straightened out eventually and in the mean time I feel great not being paranoid about getting arrested. There were people who applied for a license with no intention of opening to try to cash in. The LCB is going after them, that is good, give the license to someone who will actually open. Worry more about Florida, Georgia, and New York for reform. Washington will be just fine.

  9. Would be nice to have a way to connect with the people who are setting the prices up — their greed doesn’t reflect our desire to smoke….I’ll go without or grow my own before I pay ludicrous prices. AIN’T PAYIN IT!

  10. $800/oz IS INSANE. I thought AZ’s prices were high… ummmm… they ARE high at $360/oz. I won’t pay those prices though…

  11. what a mess! I’m disappointed in the greed aspect – the paraphanalia business is also very obviously over priced. I refuse to participate in the greed. The people who are talking $800 (and other ludicrous prices) an ounce can keep their pot. Black market might not lose any business at the rate these pathetic legal people are trying to lead us in. How long will it take before they notice, we aren’t following? I hope these business people get it together and quit thinking we’re a bunch of sheep that will jump on their bandwagon just because it’s legal. Can’t fix stupid America! Come on……

  12. Washington fucked this up from the GET GO, when they WROTE the law! It’s vague and doesn’t give any explicit directions of HOW to implement the program. They didn’t provide for a Medical program, THEY VOTED IN a 5ng limit upon themselves etc… they were just SO QUICK to legalize cannabis, that they didn’t think it through thoroughly. IMHO anyway!

  13. we hope that Oregon has a better plan, from what we know our friends at the OLCC are already working on things, local cities are already treating legalization as a very likely reality. However the stakes are high.

  14. Washington state has completely screwed this up from the very beginning. worse still our local cities and counties are going against the will of the people and banning or subverting the intent of the people.
    Currently the majority of people in Washington DO NOT have reasonable access retail marijuana and when they do the lowest prices are well over $800 oz! let me be clear that $800 number is no mistake, often it is much higher as suppliers “process” the product to squeeze even more dollars out of the consumer, and then blame our state gov .
    (to figure out the states share you just have to subtract 25% from the retail price, and yes I know how the tax works but that is still the way to figure out the pretax price….its just math)

  15. Sounds like Washington dropped the football, while Colorado made a touchdown. Go with the winning team is obvious.

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