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Dispatches from public radio's correspondent at the Washington Legislature. Austin Jenkins is the Olympia correspondent for the Northwest News Network. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) weekly public affairs program "Inside Olympia."

Inslee Praises Washington Medical Marijuana Regulation Measure

Austin Jenkins
Northwest News Network
At a general media availability, Washington Governor Jay Inslee tried to reassure medical marijuana patients who are concerned that regulation of the industry will restrict their access to medical grade cannabis.

Washington Governor Jay Inslee said it’s time for the “Wild West” days of medical marijuana to come to an end.

The Democrat praised lawmakers Monday for sending him a measure to regulate the industry. Inslee also tried to reassure patients who worry about a spike in prices and a shortage of medical grade cannabis.

“There’s no effort to prevent those people from having their legitimate health needs taken care of and I think this bill, by and large, allows that to happen,” he said.

Inslee did hint that he might make some line-item vetoes.

Generally, the measure would roll the state’s unregulated medical marijuana system into the highly regulated recreational pot market. Dispensaries and collective gardens would go away and patients would have to join a state registry to receive tax breaks and other protections under the law.

Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy, as well as the Washington State Legislature. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) Emmy-nominated public affairs program "Inside Olympia."