Moratorium on pot sales would exclude state-licensed sellers

Staff writerOctober 22, 2013 

The Olympia City Council moved forward with regulations for recreational marijuana businesses Tuesday.

Council members advanced proposed rules which would exclude state-licensed recreational pot retailers, producers and processors from the city’s one-year moratorium on new marijuana establishments. The council will take a final vote during its Nov. 4 meeting.

The moratorium, adopted May 7, remains in effect for other new marijuana land uses such as medical collective gardens.

According to the proposed ordinance:

• Marijuana businesses must be operated within a permanent enclosed structure with a roof, and ventilation systems so that no odors are detected off the premises. Exterior displays or pot cultivation may not be visible from outside the business.

• Consumption of marijuana or products containing marijuana or alcohol at a business is prohibited. “Associated uses” such as dance space, smoking rooms and cabarets also won’t be allowed.

• All businesses must have security systems and video surveillance that are monitored 24 hours a day. Videos are subject to inspection by Olympia Police Department upon request.

• Retailers may only operate between 8 a.m. and 9 p.m.; sales would only be allowed in an area between Martin Way and Pacific Avenue along Interstate 5 and in the area of Cooper Point Road and Black Lake Boulevard.

• All businesses would require a conditional use permit, which would be reviewed by the city’s Hearing Examiner after a public hearing.

• Marijuana production and processing would be allowed only in light industrial zones.

Washington voters last year approved the recreational use of marijuana, as well as its sale to adults to 21 and older, at state-licensed stores. By state law, pot businesses will not be allowed within 1,000 feet of schools, parks, playgrounds, libraries and public transit centers.

Lisa Pemberton: 360-754-5433

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