The Washington State Liquor Control Board is in the process of finalizing rules to start issuing licenses for the many recreational marijuana producers, processors, and retailers across the country. Kent, Washington was once viewed as a prime location for marijuana production but that doesn't seem to be in Kent's future. The City Council voted to ban medical marijuana in June 2012 and it seems that they will be treating recreational marijuana the same way.
While State law allows both medical marijuana and recreational marijuana to be produced and sold, the City of Kent has said that they believe the businesses violate federal law. As such, they will not allow any recreational businesses to open in town next year.
Some on the council are worried, however, that if they don't zone properly for future marijuana businesses, they may be left out in the cold.
"This only stops us from not being able to participate in tax revenue….People will engage in marijuana use and will spend money somewhere. I hate to see us cut off the nose to spite the face."
--Elizabeth Albertson, Councilwoman
There are a few medical marijuana businesses that still manage to operate in Kent, despite the ban. Under the zoning code, they have no legal right to operate and they have told them multiple times to close. Herbal Choice Caregivers is one business that has fought the city in Kent County Superior Court and for now stays open.