Three agencies release draft recommendations on medical marijuana

Public may provide written comment on draft recommendations until November 8, 2013

OLYMPIA –The three state agencies drafting proposed recommendations for regulating medical marijuana for the Liquor Control Board to consider sending to the Legislature today released a draft. Now there is an opportunity for the public to provide written comments.

A proviso in Section 141 of the state operating budget directs the Liquor Control Board to work with the departments of Revenue and Health to develop recommendations for the Legislature regarding the interaction of medical marijuana regulations and the emerging recreational marijuana system. A workgroup, consisting of staff from the three agencies, has been working on draft recommendations since July.

Per the budget proviso, the workgroup has prepared draft recommendations in eight categories that include possession amounts, medical marijuana authorizing requirements, taxation and other topics. If enacted, these recommendations will help provide patients with an adequate, safe and secure source of medical marijuana.

Among the recommendations are developing a registry for patients and their designated providers, reducing the amount of marijuana qualified patients or designated providers may possess at one time and requiring patients to receive an in-person exam by a qualified health care provider before medical marijuana can be authorized. The recommendations reflect Washington State’s commitment to address the concerns outlined by U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder in his August 2013 message to state leaders.

Written comments may be submitted at through November 8, 2013. Below is the timeline for finalizing, reporting and delivering the final recommendations to the Legislature. 

Date (2013) Milestone
October 21 Draft recommendations submitted to stakeholders for comment
November 8 Deadline for written comments
December TBD Liquor and Cannabis Board will consider adoption of recommendations
January 1, 2014   Deadline for the Liquor and Cannabis Board to submit recommendations to the Legislature

For answers to frequently asked questions about the current state of medical marijuana, please visit the medical marijuana section of the Department of Health’s website.



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