public consumption

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Washington: Liquor Control Board Bans 'Legal' Marijuana From Bars


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Marijuana's supposed to be legal now in Washington state, but apparently it's not as legal as alcohol. The Washington State Liquor Control Board on Wednesday adopted a rule change making it illegal for any business with a liquor license to allow on-premises cannabis consumption of any kind.

The rule change goes into effect 30 days from unanimously board vote, according Liquor Control Board spokesman Mikhail Carpenter, reports Jeremy Pawloski at The Olympian. That would mean that marijuana smokers who light up in Frankie's Sports Pub in Olympia will be breaking the law after January 17.

Frankie's, for a year now, has allowed bar patrons to smoke weed in an upstairs private room. Owner Frank Schnarr says that members can legally smoke there after Washington state voters approved I-502, making it legal for adults 21 and older to possess and use up to an ounce of marijuana.

Washington bars -- that is, except for Frankie's -- ban smoking of any kind, but Schnarr won a legal battle to allow his patrons to smoke tobacco in an upstairs room, if they pay $10 annual dues to become "Friends of Frankie's."

Business is booming at the bar since he started allowing marijuana smoking, Schnarr said. There are now about 13,500 "Friends of Frankie's," he said.

Schnarr said he planned to ignore the Liquor Control Board rule change. Carpenter said the LCB will enforce the rule.

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