Staff presented a Quarterly Cannabis and Vapor Rules Review, an Investigator Unit Team Update, and several interesting updates from Director Rick Garza.
Here are some observations from the Wednesday April 18th Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board (WSLCB) Executive Management Team (EMT) meeting.
My top 3 takeaways:
- WSLCB Policy and Rules Coordinator Joanna Eide presented a Quarterly Cannabis and Vapor Rules Review summarizing all current rulemaking activity for the EMT.
- Packaging and Labeling Rules (transcript, audio).
- Retail License Forfeiture Rules (transcript, audio).
- 2017 Cannabis Legislation Rules (transcript, audio).
- 2018 Cannabis Legislation Rules (transcript, audio).
- Retail License Title Certificates, Vapor Rules, Cannabis Production and Canopy Rules (transcript, audio).
- At the request of the Board, Enforcement Chief Justin Nordhorn presented an Investigator Unit Team Update (transcript, audio). Investigations appear to be entirely driven by complaints, which have been increasing in quantity year over year creating a backlog. Discussion touched on the Board’s concerns about hidden ownership and accurate documentation of true parties of interest. In conclusion, it sounds like the WSLCB intends to expand the size of the Enforcement Investigative Unit and is considering training options.
- WSLCB Director Rick Garza’s update included several interesting items (transcript, audio).
- Director Garza, WSLCB Chair Jane Rushford, and WSLCB Director of Legislative Relations Chris Thompson met with Washington State Senator Karen Keiser to discuss the WSLCB’s interim charge from the legislature: performance of a study for home delivery of medical products to patients. Chris Thompson will be responsible for the study and has been asked to present his planned process at a subsequent Board Caucus.
- Discussion subsequently turned to the availability of medically-compliant product in the I-502 system (transcript, audio). The WSLCB may convene a workgroup with patients and industry stakeholders to learn more about the situation and opportunities for regulatory change at WSLCB and/or the Department of Health. This item was added to the draft agenda for the upcoming Cannabis Advisory Council meeting (May 9).
- Finally, the EMT shared their perspectives on the recent high-profile announcements from current and former Republican Party members at the federal level who have changed their positions in relation to Cannabis. Chair Rushford’s succinct expression gets the final word: “Ka-ching!”