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Government and Politics
In 2012, Washington and Colorado voters made history when they approved measures to legalize recreational marijuana. Washington Initiative 502 “authorizes the state liquor board to regulate and tax marijuana for persons twenty-one years of age or older.”Since the vote in Washington, the Liquor Board has written a complex set of rules for the state’s new, legal recreational cannabis marketplace. The agency has also set limits on the amount of marijuana that can be grown. And the Board has begun to license growers, processors and retailers.For now, the Obama administration has signaled it will not interfere with Washington and Colorado’s legal pot experiment, unless there is evidence that legal pot is “leaking” to other states or children are getting access to the legal product. The feds are also watching to see if criminal organizations exploit the legal market.The first marijuana retail stores in Washington opened in July 2014.Recreational marijuana is also set to become legal in Oregon on July 1, 2015 after voters approved Measure 91 in November 2014.

Marijuana Buffer Zone Will Not Be Measured 'As The Crow Flies'

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Marco Mazzei, Flickr.

Washington’s Liquor Control Board has come up with a new way to measure the 1,000 foot buffer zone required between marijuana businesses and places where kids congregate. The new method of measurement may allow pot stores in neighborhoods otherwise thought to be off limits.

Instead of "as the crow flies," they talk about the most common walking route you would take. So, for instance a thousand foot buffer from a school, leave the school campus and walk to where the store would be using the most common walking route. If that’s a 1,000 feet or more, you’re okay.

The new way of measuring the buffer is included in the latest draft rules for marijuana businesses in Washington. The state is setting up a recreational pot market because of a ballot initiative approved by voters last year. The new rules also limit the number of retail outlets to 334 statewide.