Drive to legalize medical marijuana dispensaries fails

May 24, 2011 

Last week, I wrote that the medical marijuana bill was on life support. Today, it's officially dead.

Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles, the main proponent of legalizing and licensing dispensaries that sell marijuana to patients, announced today that even her most recent, scaled-back bill won't proceed.

It's "the greatest disappointment of my legislative career," Kohl-Welles said in a statement.

Gov. Chris Gregoire gutted her first try at proposing regulations, but allowed a few changes to proceed into law, including authorization for collective marijuana gardens. The remnants that made it into law also contain some vague references to dispensaries -- which the industry hopes to use to convince courts they are indeed legal.

The next move is up to cities and counties.

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