Washington State Senate Committee to Hold Meeting Tomorrow Morning on 5 Marijuana Bills

The Washington State Senate Committee on Labor & Commerce will hold a meeting tomorrow morning at 8:00 am to obtain public comment on five (5) marijuana related bills. Interested parties should attend and provide input. A key bill the proposal in SB 5678 to implement a budtender permit process that will impose another tax on industry employees.

The bills along with a summary of the amendments to current law are outlined below.

 SB 5155 – Allowing residential marijuana agriculture. Persons older than 21 may to grow up to 6 plants in their residence with a cap of 15 plants regardless of the number of inhabitants that are older than 21. The bill also establishes requirements for performing home extraction and possession limits. All personally grown and processed marijuana products must be labeled with the individual’s name and address.

 SB 5678 – Creating additional training requirements for licensed marijuana retailers and their employees. Beginning on July 1, 2020, marijuana retailer employees who sell marijuana or perform customer service must complete a state sponsored training course and pay for a budtender permit. The state may cancel a budtender permit for bad behavior including the failure to pay child support.. The training program will address state laws and regulations, the safe handling of marijuana products, and preventing minors from accessing marijuana.

 SB 5318 – Reforming the compliance and enforcement provisions for marijuana licensees. The liquor and control board may consider administrative rule violations that occurred after June 30, 2018 when determining to grant a new license application. The liquor and control board must rely on clear, cogent and convincing evidence that administrative violations that occurred prior to June 30, 2018 were diversionary in nature, involved firearms or resulted in the sale of marijuana to minors.

 SB 5298 – Regarding labeling of marijuana products. The bill amends the labeling requirements for marijuana products to establish limits to advertising heath and wellness benefits. The law is amended to permit the label to include a “structure or function claim” describing the intended role the marijuana product has in maintaining the “structure and function of the body” so long as the claim is substantiated as truthful and not misleading. The proposed amendment also includes the words that would be acceptable in promoting the wellness component of a marijuana product.

 SB 5201 – Authorizing marijuana retailers to sell certain products and merchandise. The bill amends current law to permit marijuana retailers to sell CBD products made by a manufacturer that is outside of the marijuana regulatory framework.; merchandise including clothing apparel; and other non-consumable products.

SB 5234 – Modifying the excise tax for medical marijuana patients with recognition cards for products identified as beneficial for medical use. Qualifying patients who hold a registration card will not pay an excise tax for marijuana products that are beneficial for medical purposes.

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