Purpose and Responsibilities
The Social Equity in Cannabis Task Force is responsible for making recommendations to the Liquor and Cannabis Board (LCB) about establishing a Social Equity in Cannabis program for the issuance and reissuance of existing cannabis licenses.
The Task Force is also charged with advising the Governor and Legislature on policies that will increase social equity in the cannabis industry.
The Task Force submitted their first set of recommendations on January 6, 2022. The Task Force must submit a final report to the Legislature and Governor by December 9, 2022. The report must include recommendations on the following:
- Factors LCB must consider in distributing currently available cannabis retail licenses (i.e., subject to forfeiture, revocation, or cancellation by LCB) or those that were not previously issued;
- Whether any additional retail, producer, or processor licenses should be issued beyond the total number of licenses that have been issued as of June 11, 2020;
- The social equity impact of altering residential cannabis agriculture regulations;
- The social equity impact of shifting regulation of cannabis production from LCB to the Washington State Department of Agriculture, including impacts to the employment rights of workers;
- The social equity impact of removing nonviolent cannabis related charges from the existing point system used to determine qualification for cannabis licenses;
- Whether to create workforce training opportunities for underserved communities to increase employment opportunities in the cannabis industry;
- The social equity impact of creating new cannabis license types; and
Recommendations for the cannabis social equity technical assistance grant program.
The LCB accepted all recommendations of the Task Force. The proposed draft rules were approved by the Board on Aug. 3, 2022. A public hearing on the proposed draft rules is set for Sept. 14, 2022. Please visit the What is LCB Doing Now on Social Equity page for the latest information.