Committee members learned the status of the WSLCB equity retail program and asked a few questions as they sought to develop a dedicated social equity program for Seattle.
After public comments were heard, Finance and Administrative Services staff offered research and stakeholder recommendations on cannabis business equity before replying to questions.
Four panelists representing cannabis retail staff and social equity advocates briefed the committee on possible impacts of a city equity program on worker safety and advancement.
A last-minute hearing on a repackaged bill to regulate synthesized cannabinoids revealed shared public health concerns but testimony otherwise remained just as sharply divided.
Committee members heard positive testimony on a bill to increase penalties for cannabis retail robberies, and asked questions about the frequency of incidents and other solutions.
Testimony on legislation to revise regulation of cannabinoids emphasized policy pitfalls versus prospective benefits, and hinted at fiscal fallout from litigious hemp industry interests.
After more than three years, rulemaking on pesticide testing still elicited criticism from many producers and processors, though a few stakeholders suggested enacting and moving on.
With increasing incidents of cannabis retail robbery, legislation adding reporting requirements and sentencing enhancements was seen as helpful, but some argued it sidestepped bigger issues.
A hearing on social equity legislation provoked largely favorable testimony, peppered with repeated questions and comments about proposed buffer zones changes for retailers.
Two visions for the future of cannabinoid regulation were presented to senators, with testimony split between a measure developed by WACA members and WSLCB request legislation.