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The Pacific Northwest Inlander

​Almost 14 years after Washington state voters approved the medicinal use of cannabis, patients in many parts of the state still have no safe access to it. A bill which would have formally legalized medical marijuana dispensaries in Washington has died in the Legislature.

Thus ends yet another effort to clearly define the legal status of the cannabis storefronts, of which there are already more than 100 in Seattle, Tacoma and surrounding areas, reports Jonathan Martin at the Seattle Times.
Although there were enough votes in the Senate to pass the bill, according to sponsor Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles (D-Seattle), it didn’t make it past the deadline for bills to advance because of limited time in the short session, as well as due to opposition from some Republican lawmakers and a handful of cities.


​About two dozen people rallied on the Washington state capitol steps on Tuesday, calling on Governor Christine Gregoire to approve a law licensing medical marijuana dispensaries and providing arrest protection for patients.

Controversy has erupted over the bill, already approved by both houses of the Legislature, since Gov. Gregoire threatened last week to veto it, claiming it could expose state workers to federal prosecution. State workers have never been prosecuted for licensing medical marijuana operations in any of the 15 states where medicinal cannabis is legal.
Protesters on Tuesday said if the governor vetoes SB 5073, it would show she is disrespecting the 1998 voter initiative that legalized medical marijuana in Washington, and that she is abandoning patients who rely on it, reports Katie Schmidt at The Tacoma News Tribune.


​A bill that would have legalized marijuana in Washington state — supported by every state legislator from Seattle, as well as the city’s mayor, city attorney and several City Council members — is officially dead in Olympia, the state capitol.

House Bill 1550 didn’t even advance out of the relevant committees by Friday evening, a key cutoff date for the 2011 Legislature, reports Chris Grygiel at the Seattle P.I.
Sponsored by Rep. Mary Lou Dickerson (D-Seattle), the measure would legalize marijuana, have its sale regulated by the state Liquor Control Board, and impose a tax of 15 percent on cannabis.