Wednesday, July 16, 2014

WEED WEDNESDAY: An update on Spokane's stores and the first ever marijuana market study

Posted By on Wed, Jul 16, 2014 at 4:34 PM

Welcome back to Weed Wednesday, your weekly dose of pot news. Wondering what this is about? Click. Looking for our previous marijuana coverage? Click. Got a question or tip? Email me at [email protected].

First an update on Spokane's three licensed marijuana stores. Spokane Green Leaf (9107 N. Country Homes), the only one to open last week, is still operating with limited hours. They were open over the weekend and are closed again until Friday at 1 pm. Satori (9301 N. Division) hopes to open next Wednesday and the owner of Green Star Cannabis (1403 N. Division) tells us he expects to open "sometime in the next couple of weeks." On the westside, Seattle's only store is out of weed and expects to open again on July 25, according to the Seattle Times.

Remember the news last week about the guy who was being fired for being first in line to buy legal marijuana in Spokane? It's still unclear exactly what happened (was he actually fired?), but the story went viral and he was offered his job back.

Pot grower Sean Green says his grow was burglarized over the weekend, though only two energy drinks were actually stolen. KHQ talked to another grower, Wesley Tuttle (whom we featured here) about the extensive security measures growers are required to have in place.

The city of Wenatchee, which was sued over its ban on marijuana businesses, has responded to the suit without citing the much discussed federal preemption issue. Instead of arguing that the city can ban the businesses because pot remains federally illegal, Wenatchee argues it can ban them because nothing in the state law (Initiative 502) explicitly prevents them from doing so (an argument the state's attorney general has made too). The case will go forward, but this means the ACLU of Washington isn't likely to get involved, as it had promised to do if the federal issue came up.

In Colorado, pot sales were down slightly in May, but still raked in $5.7 million in taxes that month, according to the AP. The Seattle Times reports that Washington's first three days of sales brought in nearly $150,000 in taxes (and that's before sales and B&O taxes).

Colorado also released what may be the first-ever market study of legal weed. The report, which analyzed the first three months of recreational sales there, found demand for about 130 metric tons of recreational and medical pot a year — higher than the state's previous estimates.

Elsewhere, cops in Washington D.C. are preparing for the new decriminalization law that takes effect there tomorrow; the medical marijuana farmers market we told you about last week has been temporarily blocked by a judge; weed delivery services continue to operate in a legal gray area; and the U.S. House reaffirmed Treasury Department guidance from February meant to make it easier for banks to work with pot businesses.

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Heidi Groover

Heidi Groover is a staff writer at the Inlander, where she covers city government and drug policy. On the job, she's spent time with prostitutes, "street kids," marriage equality advocates and the family of a 16-year-old organ donor...