Washington’s medical marijuana retailers should fall under the same tight regulations that govern the state’s recreational outlets, Seattle’s city attorney argued this week.
In a policy memo issued this week, city attorney Pete Holmes said unregulated medical marijuana shops operate outside the law, the Seattle Times reports. Holmes said the city should crack down on the establishments.
He also supports marijuana lounges, where consumers can bring their own cannabis, reports Seattle Times staff writer Evan Bush. Under state regulations, consumers are not allowed to consume marijuana at retail establishments.
“If you’re a commercial (medical-marijuana) operation lacking a 502 license (Initiative 502), it’s a felony operation. Period,” said Holmes.
Holmes said he hopes his memo reframes the debate about medical marijuana. He said recent court decisions have made it clear that medical-marijuana providers have a “limited affirmative defense” in court, but that’s it.
“I have talked to some medical producers who are clearly commercial,” Holmes said. “They say, ‘Are you going to make it illegal?’ This memo is clear: You’re already illegal.”
— The Oregonian