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Seattle Cracking Down on Weed Delivery Services

Mary Jane Gibson

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Seattle police have, until now, largely ignored marijuana-delivery services. That’s about to change, according to a report in The Stranger.

The alternative weekly reports that David Mendoza, a policy adviser in the mayor’s office, told members of the city council in a meeting on Dec. 10 that the administration wants the Seattle Police Department to crack down on weed-delivery services. Pot delivery is, in fact, illegal under Washington’s medical marijuana law, as well as under I-502, which legalized recreational marijuana. But until now, it has basically been ignored by law enforcement.

The mayor’s office now plans to direct police to shut down Seattle delivery services, and the administration also has proposed new rules to crack down on medical marijuana dispensaries, which currently operate in a legal gray area. The number of Seattle’s medical marijuana dispensaries is rapidly growing, according to Mendoza, who revealed Mayor Ed Murray’s aims with the unequivocal statement that “Our goal is to stop this growth.”

The administration’s proposed new rules also include requiring opaque packaging for edibles, possible bans on edibles that could be enticing to children, and enforcing a 500-foot distance from schools, day cares and parks, as well as a 1000-foot distance from other dispensaries. Those distance requirements may be difficult to meet, given the number of dispensaries in the city.

Evidently, the administration is also considering creating rules for I-502-licensed recreational stores that reflect state limits on signage and advertising, so if a store is in violation of those rules the city can penalize them without having to wait for the state. Things in Washington are going to be much less pleasant if that’s the case.

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