Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes wants to see more recreational marijuana stores open in Seattle than is currently planned. Pete Holmes was a sponsor of I-502. Currently, there are 21 marijuana stores allocated to Seattle under I-502's plans. Pete Holmes wants to see that number more than doubled to 50 marijuana stores.
Pete Holmes is also urging Washington State officials to change the way they measure the 1,000 foot distance between recreational marijuana stores and 'areas frequented by youth.' In addition, Mr. Holmes was to see preference given to existing medical marijuana dispensary owners who are seeking to create recreational outlets. If Seattle officials don't listen to Mr. Holmes, there is a good chance that many customers will still make their purchases via the black market.
Washington, along with Colorado, is being observed closely by the rest of the nation to see how marijuana legalization is implemented. To quote one reader that commented on a previous Washington article, 'I hope they don't f this up and ruin it for everyone else.' There's a fine line between regulation that gives legitimacy to the legal Washington marijuana industry, and regulation that crushes the chances of true success, which will force people to go to the black market.
If people are still making their purchases from the black market in Colorado and Washington after legalization is fully implemented, it will no doubt be something that opponents in other states point to. It will also turn off would be supporters because legalizing marijuana is supposed to make their marijuana purchasing experience better. How many marijuana retail outlets do you think is appropriate in Seattle? Should there be a limit at all?