The state House and Senate both passed--and Governor Inslee will almost certainly now sign--a bill that combines the recreational market and the medical market into one unified set of rules, similar to what Colorado did post-legalization.
Most of the city's 300 "green cross" dispensaries would be shut down, with medical patients shopping at specially licensed recreational stores instead; by signing up for a voluntary patient registry they would be able to purchase up to 3 ounces of marijuana at a time, as opposed to the recreational limit of 1 ounce and the current medical limit of 24 ounces.
Allowed home grows would also be reduced from 15 plants per person to 4 plants per person (6 if you're on the registry).
There are separate proposals working their way through the legislature to substantially reduce the tax burden on recreational pot purchases, too.
If Inslee signs the bill into law as expected, the new rules will take effect in July.
A small group of "kayaktivists," Greenpeace workers, and journalists were out in the Port Angeles harbor to meet it--click the headline link above for a first-hand account by The Strangers's Sydney Brownstone.
The Polar Pioneer should reach Seattle sometime in late May or early April, with a second ship, the Noble Discoverer, due in mid-May.
Local kayaktivists are training now to ensure that they'll be ready when it's time to paddle out and meet their destiny.
It was [un]officially Homelessness Funding Week at the City
First there was the release of the Human Services Department's (HSD's) Homelessness Investment Analysis, which provided an in-depth look at how the City currently spends and has historically spent money addressing the issue.
Then there was an announcement that Peace for the Streets by Kids from the Streetsis receiving a $130,000 grant from HSD that will allow their LGBTQ-friendly winter shelter for homeless youth in the Central District to expand its capacity and operate year-round.
44 people applied for Sally Clark's now-vacant seat; the finalists will make their pitches to the Council at a special meeting at 4:00 this Friday the 24th, and the Council will formally appoint Clark's temporary successor at their full meeting next Monday the 27th.
With newcomer John Roderick raising $40,000 in mostly out-of-state money his first week, the fundraising race is really starting to heat up. Erica C. Barnett breaks down the numbers by district here.
And, in a nice bit of symbiotic reporting, Erica's and Josh's separate pieces on Tuesday night's north Seattle candidate forum ended up dovetailing nicely together, for those of us who weren't able to make it.
Meanwhile, in Olympia
The most appropriate adjective to use to describe State Auditor Troy Kelley is no longer "embattled"; it's "indicted." Jim Brunner at the Seattle Times has an in-depth piece in today's paper looking at Kelley's career up until he was indicted by a federal grand jury last week for allegedly stealing millions of dollars and then lying under oath about it.
And ridesharing legislation to regulate Uber, Lyft, and similar companies statewide just passed out of the legislature and will now go to Governor Inslee for his signature. It focuses primarily on insurance requirements, and won't affect legislation already in place in Seattle and other municipalities in Washington.
Gene Balk at the Seattle Times has a mostly human-interest piece about the manager of the El Capitan on Capitol Hill and his desire to keep the building affordable for current tenants and new tenants alike. He also crunches some numbers, though, and finds that rents in older Class C buildings have increased at half the rate of new Class A buildings (see here for an overview of multifamily classification codes). Short answer: if you want affordable rents, focus on buildings that have been around for awhile.
Any planner/developer/activist folks out there have a list of class B & C apartment buildings in the city they'd be willing to share with your fellow Civic Minute readers? If so, send it to me and I'll include it in a future edition.
If you need a real estate agent or you know someone who does, please let me know! I'd love to be able to help.
Be sure to mail in your ballot for the 4/28 special election! (Stranger cheat sheet here)
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