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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 Consultants Offer Advice To Potential Pot Dealers

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Brianna Butterfield
/
Northwest News Network
File photo of James Lucas of Tacoma Cross, a medical marijuana dispensary

The Northwest’s budding marijuana industry means opportunity for pot consultants.

Several are offering workshops in the coming months on how to comply with new laws in Oregon and Washington.

One website promises to help you "Open a weed store in Oregon." As it turns out, doing that involves a lot of paperwork.

"It is tedious and boring and it's a pain in the butt," admits F. Thurston Pearson, founder of a Portland marijuana consulting firm called the Green Rush Advisory Group.

He has clients who want to sell recreational marijuana in Washington and medical marijuana in Oregon. But he says once the initial excitement dies down, pot entrepreneurs find themselves face-to-face with dozens of pages of rules and regulations.

Pearson started his firm when one friend got halfway through the application process and "just gave up."

Green Rush plans a series of workshops in Portland next month to help prospective pot dealers comply with an Oregon dispensary law that just took effect.