The Washington State Senate Labor and Commerce Committee (WA Senate LBRC) considers issues relating to employment standards, industrial insurance, unemployment insurance and collective bargaining. The committee also considers regulation of business and professions and has oversight of commerce issues relating to alcohol, tobacco, cannabis, and gaming.
On Thursday March 28th, the Senate Labor and Commerce Committee hosted an executive session for HB 1794, “Concerning agreements between licensed marijuana businesses and other people and businesses, including royalty and licensing agreements relating to the use of intellectual property.”
- See details on the HB 1794's House policy committee public hearing and executive session. Engrossed Substitute HB 1794 (ESHB 1794) was passed by the full House on March 7th with one amendment. On March 19th, the Senate Labor and Commerce Committee hosted a public hearing for the bill.
- Senior Committee Counsel Richard Rogers informed the committee no amendments were put forward (audio – 4m, video).
- The bill was passed without discussion by voice vote and was referred to the Senate Rules Committee with a “do pass” recommendation (audio – 1m, video).
On Thursday March 28th, the Senate Labor and Commerce Committee hosted an executive session for HB 2052, “Clarifying marijuana product testing by revising provisions concerning marijuana testing laboratory accreditation and establishing a cannabis science task force.”
- See details on the HB 2052's House policy committee public hearing and executive session, and the House fiscal committee public hearing and executive session. HB 2052 was passed by the full House on March 6th without amendments. On March 19th, the Senate Labor and Commerce Committee hosted a public hearing for the bill.
- Rogers briefed on 2052 AMS LBRC S3091.2, a striking amendment from Committee Chair Karen Keiser, which proposed six substantive changes to the bill (audio – 2m, video):
- (1) Requires that the state marijuana product testing laboratory accreditation program initial development costs must be fully paid from the dedicated marijuana account.
- (2) Changes the date of the transfer of the accreditation program to the Department of Ecology to July 1, 2024.
- (3) Limits the initial scope of the Cannabis Science Task Force to pesticides in plants for laboratory quality standards for the 7/1/20 report to legislature.
- (4) Requires the Cannabis Science Task Force to recommend regulatory changes each agency should make to implement the pesticide lab quality standards. The recommendations are included in the 7/1/20 report to legislature.
- (5) Directs the Cannabis Science Task Force to submit a report to the legislature by 12/1/21 on the recommendations for laboratory quality standards for heavy metals and potency, at a minimum.
- (6) Allows the Liquor and Cannabis Board to initiate rule making to address the findings and recommendations in the task force reports, as the Department of Ecology does not take over accreditation until 2024.
- Keiser told members HB 2052 was “incredibly important to public health” and said legislators had worked with stakeholders to find an agreed-upon process for pesticide and eventually heavy metals testing of cannabis products. She urged passage to “help our confidence and our public health.” Ranking Member Curtis King seconded Keiser’s views (audio – 2m, video).
- The bill was passed by unanimous voice vote and referred to the Senate Ways and Means Committee.