Backers of a new initiative to strengthen Washington state's medical marijuana law are now gathering signatures.
"Initiative Measure No. 1372, filed January 6, 2015, will protect and strengthen the medical cannabis law, RCW 69.51A, by offering compassion, clarity and consistency," said Kirk Ludden of Cannabis Patient Protection Washington (CPPWA) on Wednesday.
I-1372 would make the following changes, according to Ludden:
• Bringing Washington state law into compliance with stated federal policy
• Allowing business owners to obtain licenses for producing, processing or dispensing cannabis in a commercial manner. Using the language from ESSB 5073, specifying cannabis for medical use licensing, allowing producers and processors to deliver cannabis to any cannabis for medical use licensee, and allowing the botanical herb tax exemption on cannabis for medical use.
• Creating and empowering the cannabis for medical use board, made up of the state and the community, to govern all aspects of the market. Through licensing and regulation fees, revenue is generated for the board to regulate the not-for-profit cannabis for medical use market while remaining revenue neutral.
• Maintaining small, private residential gardens and patient cooperatives that do not violate the spirit or intent of law. As well as protecting existing cannabis farmer's markets serving qualifying patients.