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PUBLISHER: CANNABIS LAW REPORT
My identify is Rob Hendrix. I reside in Ellensburg, Washington. I’ve been married to the identical woman since 1979, I’ve three children and 5 grandchildren. I’ve lived in the identical home since 1991. I’ve a BS in Economics from Central Washington College, class of 1982. I’m the final individual you’d ever count on to personal a pot store.
For me the journey began in December 2013. We utilized for a license to personal and function a retail cannabis retailer in Washington State following the passage of Initiative 502 in November 2012 legalizing leisure use of marijuana.
We started receiving calls from our licensing specialist, a really arduous working State employee named Kimberly, in mid January 2014. We have been knowledgeable throughout these first few calls the primary authorized cannabis shops have been slated to start opening in July later that 12 months and that she wished us to be within the first flight. Additional, we have been knowledgeable we, my spouse Diane, and I might each be topic to 2 totally different background checks; a FBI in addition to a Washington State Patrol background examine. Kimberly additionally walked us by the private funds portion of the guidelines to turn out to be eligible for a retail license. This appeared easy and straight ahead and excellent for us as we didn’t have a really difficult portfolio; a home with a mortgage, two automobiles, a paltry financial savings account.
Washington State determined early on one of the simplest ways to award restricted numbers of licenses could be by lottery. We needed to disclose our funds on a month-to-month foundation, we needed to show residency, we needed to have chosen an appropriate and permitted location to incorporate a rental/lease settlement or a signed legitimate mortgage on mentioned property. (This was an fascinating step in the whole course of. The State mandated the potential location of any cannabis enterprise should be no less than 1000 ft from colleges, hospitals, librairies, dayare amenities, any parks. Ellensburg shouldn’t be a giant city and it’s a pretty conservative city so discovering a location that each met State necessities and one who’s proprietor would look favorably on that location getting used for a cannabis enterprise was very, very tough. We succeeded in the end however simply barely. That’s one other fascinating story however one we do not need time for right here)
As we labored by the Spring towards the Might 5 lottery day, it turned obvious there could be seven (7) qualifying entities in our hometown of Ellensburg the place the State had beforehand determined two (2) shops could be situated. As you could have guessed, we have been chosen #2 however we truly opened the very first retail cannabis store in our Metropolis and County, however I’m getting forward of myself.
This can be a very transient account of the vetting course of in Washington State to acquire a retail cannabis license to function a retail cannabis store. In Washington State, the Cole Memo issued by the DOJ again in August 2013 was all the time the backdrop for all guidelines, rules, WACs, RCWs and many others. I’m certain that though the Cole Memo has been metaphorically talking “torn” up, New England, I’m assured will create a really comparable path for the residents utility course of. Verifying residency can be a key, verifying an absence of any important felony background, verifying to a point a capability to open and function a enterprise, verifying places and all workers are all going to be key parts in garnering the spot in a lottery ought to your State select that path.
In Washington State our regulatory company charged with overseeing all facets of monitoring cannabis companies together with enforcement is the Washington State Liquor and Hashish Board, WSLCB, normally known as the LCB. The LCB has entry to all monetary and transactions information through what is named traceability. Its almost a certainty that New England States may have an analogous system in place. That is obligatory amongst so many different controls to maintain the Federalgovernment at bay so cannabis companies can truly conduct enterprise with out concern, therefore the completely obligatory adherence to the letter in addition to the spirit of this memo.
Your privateness won’t be a excessive precedence along with your State or the Federal authorities. Since cannabis is a Schedule 1 Managed Substance, formally and technically you’re about to turn out to be drug sellers and cash launderers. The scrutiny is one thing to behold and a side of this trade that, no less than for now, should be totally accepted and handled each day. Regardless of whether or not you’re situated in Vermont or Massachusetts or anyplace else for that matter together with my house State of Washington, scrutiny and oversight will turn out to be a part of your each day routine.
There can be many questions, many roadblocks, many impediments in your journey must you select cannabis as a part of your future. Do your analysis, your due diligence. Data is energy and training and preparation will get you efficiently by something anybody can throw at you. It has been life altering for me and my household, however was by no means straightforward and subsequently I say it’s not for the faint of coronary heart. However then once more, if it have been straightforward, anybody may do it!
Rob Hendrix, proprietor
Hashish Central of Ellensburg
Hashish Consulting Nationwide