State Rep. Shelley Kloba, D-Kirkland, called Washington’s ban on home growing of cannabis “an antiquated policy.”
Lara Kaminsky, co-founder of the Cannabis Alliance, said she thinks allowing marijuana home growing will actually be good for the cannabis industry in Washington state. She said it could create a market for greater variety in cannabis products, much as homebrewing and microbreweries did for the beer industry.
“What I often hear is conflation of large-scale illicit activity with what we are actually advocating for here, which is legalizing six-plant, noncommercial home gardens,” Kingsbury said.
Washington state residents have long been able to brew their own beer in their basement, or ferment homemade wine in their living room. If they want to smoke a joint to unwind, though, their only legal option is to get dressed and buy one at a store.
“The bill sets down reasonable guard rails for home grows,” said a spokesperson for Kloba. “It establishes a small civil fine for growing cannabis that can be seen or smelled from the street to ensure that home growing does not become a nuisance or a target for theft.”
54% of Bellingham housing units were renter-occupied in 2015, according to the 2011-2015 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates for Bellingham housing.
Methamphetamine production is known to create chemical poisoning and structural damage in buildings that housed the production, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Eskridge said that wouldn’t be a problem with cannabis plants.
Legislation authorizing personal cannabis cultivation may be taken up again in 2022 or reintroduced in next biennium
The intricacies and variables of growing high-quality produce remain trade secrets, but Cihlar said if cannabis amateurs want to try it, they need to be prepared for investment of their time and resources.
On Feb. 22, 2021, the Washington State Legislature dropped a proposed cannabis legislation to authorize personal home grows after it met its fiscal committee cutoff deadline.
“There is a world of difference between what it would cost you and what it costs us,” Cihlar said. “If you are talking about a home grow, it will cost you significantly more per plant than it costs us. Again, trade secrets.”
With Whatcom County home to numerous producers and dispensaries, Cihlar said growing personal plants will be more about the process and enjoyment of caring for plants, rather than making it a profitable enterprise.
If applications open again, the fee to obtain a producer license is $1381. Additionally, you will have to pay a $250 application fee to be considered.
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Piece of Mind Cannabis partners with the best growers in Washington
Regardless, it is illegal to grow any amount of marijuana plants for personal use in Washington state. Doing so is a class C felony which is punishable by up to 5 years imprisonment and/or a fine of up to $10,000.
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