Washington state needs a few good narcs under the age of 20 to help them try to bust recreational pot stores selling to minors. If anyone reading this thinks they’d be good for this role, find a tall cliff on Mt. Rainier and jump.
The state Liquor Control Board says the planned “controlled buyer” program is identical to one they already run on alcohol stores. Adults ages 18, 19 and 20 are paid $10 an hour to work with the cops and try to make purchases.
The state Liquor Control Board, said the moves will help keep federal overlords happy. “Of course, the feds are looking at a tightly regulated market around youth access, and I think this shows we’re being responsible,” Justin Nordhorn, enforcement chief for the state Liquor Control Board, tells the Seattle Times
Interestingly, Washington laws make it illegal for anyone under 21 to even try and buy booze – fake ID or not. It is not illegal for people under 21 to try and buy recreational marijuana, at least not yet.
Interestingly, there’s opposition to this not from pro-pot groups but from anti-cannabis Washington Association for Substance Abuse and Violence Prevention says the police are putting the people used in the stings in danger because pot shops may have to be cash-only enterprises. “It seems the potential for crime is higher, so protection for minors in sting operations must be seamless,” Derek Franklin WASAVP president said in a press release. Clearly he missed that the “minors” are actually consenting adults.
Thankfully, this is all easy to avoid. People under 21 aren’t even allowed in a recreational pot shop and the young narcs have to show their real IDs. So, check ID’s at the door of your pot shop or before you start your sale. If for some reason the informants are able to buy weed, they’ll walk it outside to waiting law enforcement.
As of April 2013, the state had a compliance rate of about 90.4 percent for alcohol sales at liquor stores. Those stats dipped though when the booze was being sold out of restaurants and grocery stores selling beer and wine, with about 86.5 percent compliance. In total, there are more than 20,000 places to buy booze in Washington state.
There will be no more than 334 dispensaries in Washington, ever.
The penalties for selling alcohol to minors in Washington in first offense is $500 in fines or a five day suspension of your liquor license. The second offense is a seven day suspension. Third offense is a 30 day closure and your fourth offense cancels your license outright.
By comparison, the first offense for selling someone under 21 pot is a 10-day suspension or a $2,500 fine. A second offense within three years would net you a 30-day suspension and a third strike means you’re out of the business. According to the Washington Times, clerks could also face felony charges for selling pot to someone under 21.