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Washington To Begin Accepting Applications In November From Marijuana Retailers


washington marijuana retail legal recreational stores rulesby Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director

Washington state regulators today finalized rules to govern the state’s nascent marijuana retail market. Beginning on November 18, regulators will begin formally accepting applications from those seeking state licenses to commercially produce, process, and sell cannabis to those age 21 and over. A press release regarding the state’s forthcoming rules and the application process is available here.

Under an initiative (I-502) enacted by voters in November, the adult possession of limited quantities of non-medical marijuana — as well as the state-licensed production and sale of cannabis — is not subject to criminal penalty. Voters in Colorado approved a similar measure in November authorizing state-licensed marijuana production and retail sales. Colorado state regulators began accepting applications from would-be marijuana producers and retailers earlier this month.

In an August memorandum, Deputy Attorney General Cole directed the US Attorneys in all 50 states, including Colorado, not to interfere with the implementation of state marijuana regulations unless such activities specifically undermined eight explicit federal law enforcement priorities.

Both Colorado and Washington are anticipated to have licensed marijuana retail outlets operational by early next year.

Source: NORMLmake a donation


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Johnny Green


  1. We are planning a train trip to Denver. Smoking legal is on both of our bucket lists. We would actually prefer a train trip to Seattle (the Empire Builder is awesome). Just what is the status of recreational use in Washington state? Will there be recreational dispensaries in the state in July?

  2. While NORML proudly acknowledges it part in the passage of I-502 we can’t take full credit. I-502 was endorsed by lots of groups and people working for reform, including the ACLU, MPP, DPA, LEAP, SSDP, and supporters such at Steve DiAngelo, Richard Lee, the Emery’s, Willie Nelson, and Peter Lewis, to name just a few. Keith Henson, (proudly) NORML

  3. I hear some people talking about how medical marijuana is being used as a gateway to legalization (and I guess could suffer if and when total legalization efforts hit stumbling blocks). Is this what you mean by sham?

  4. Johnny….can you remove that AB-NORML “make a donation so I can screw you even harder in the future with your own money” link?

  5. They actually have three or four lawsuits to get past before you’ll see any licenses. They’ll be back in court this Friday to talk to the judge in Thurston County Superior Court about how they lied to him in the last hearing two weeks ago.

    Regardless of when or how I-502 fails, the legislature will kill off our 15 year old medical cannabis law in January. We can thank Mr. Armentano and his bosses a NORML for pushing that agenda and publicly denigrating medical cannabis as a “sham”.

    I will work diligently to return the “favor” and gleefully watch as NORML goes broke as a result of their attacks on the medical cannabis patients of Washington.

    Soon we’ll be distributing t-shirts: “Don’t be AB-NORML”. Proceeds will got to a defense fund for victims of the per se DUID law that I-502 brought us….and that NORML rabidly supported. They supported this law despite Mr. Armentano’s eloquent arguments against per se DUID laws for cannabis….everywhere but Washington State!

    If you still think I-502 resulted in “legalization”….you’re smoking something besides cannabis. And you were tricked.

    Steve Sarich
    Cannabis Defense Coalition

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