If you’re looking to buy a bag of legal pot on Lopez Island, don’t hold your breath.
Both applicants for marijuana retail store licenses on Lopez failed to provide qualifying applications to the Washington State Liquor Control Board, charged by Initiative 502 to implement and regulate marijuana legalization in the state.
Those on Lopez will have to travel off-island to score legal weed, at least until the WSLCB reopens the window to apply for a marijuana retailer license later this summer.
But Lopezians won’t have to travel far. Potential retailers were approved for Orcas and San Juan Island, one for each.
Only one of two applicants for a retail pot shop on Orcas Island, apparently to be named “Token Herb,” survived the initial application screening. The application for Token Herb listed 837A Crescent Beach Road in Eastsound as its potential store location. Two applications were originally filed for Orcas, but only Token Herb survived the first cut, thus obviating the need for a lottery drawing.
A lottery was required for San Juan Island, however, where 13 applicants vied for one retail marijuana store. Lawrence Enterprises of San Juan Island won that lottery. Assuming that further financial and criminal background checks are satisfactory, a retail store for sale of marijuana, pot products and paraphernalia could be opened in Friday Harbor as early as July, according to Mikhail Carpenter of the Liquor Control Board in Olympia.
James Lawrence, owner-operator of Thirsty Goose Farms on Boyce Road, is listed by the corporation division of the Washington Secretary of State as registered agent and manager of Lawrence Enterprises at 51 Boyce Road, also the address of Thirsty Goose Farms. A telephone message left by the Journal for Mr. Lawrence was not returned.
The liquor board reported that 1174 applicants filed for retail licenses at 334 locations in the state. Only 75 of 123 jurisdictions which were awarded stores required lotteries to determine who would receive a license.
Unconfirmed reports said that offers up to $250,000 have already been made to purchase businesses with approved license locations. The WSLCB said that businesses with retail marijuana licenses could be sold, but that any buyer would have to apply for a marijuana retailer license and pass background and financial checks before the liquor board would issue a license. The business could be moved at that point, but it would have to remain within the jurisdiction where the license was originally approved.
Meanwhile, the WSLCB has been busy issuing marijuana grower and processor licenses to provide product to stores when licensed. Twenty-nine marijuana production licenses have been granted, mostly in Eastern Washington, but locally licenses have been issued to growers in Everett, Sequim, Port Angeles, Bremerton and Silverdale.
Look for “Bainbridge Brainnumber” or “Bremerton Boomer” soon at your favorite pot outlet.