It’s Official: Washington Starts Selling Weed

By Shawn Dwyer 07/08/14

The Evergreen State joins Colorado in the experiment to legalize the sale of recreational marijuana.

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Already abundant in greenery, Washington has officially become the second state in the union to legally sell recreational marijuana.

With excitement running high, and apparently ready supplies running low, Washington took a few tentative steps forward by allowing licensed recreational marijuana to be sold in only a handful of locations across the state. Prior to legal recreational sale, marijuana has been legal to possess and use at home since 2012, thanks to voters passing state Initiative 502 that same year.

As with Colorado, Washington has set an age limit for persons 21 years or older, and will tax and regulate sales. According to some estimates, 50% of tax revenues from marijuana sales will go for basic healthcare, while 15% will be earmarked for drug abuse treatment and education. The remaining revenue will be divvied up between the state general fund, various research projects, and grants to build bridges.

Unlike Colorado, however, Washington has yet to allow for the sale of edibles, largely due to not approving how manufacturers make their product. But the state does anticipate a boon in tax revenue, with estimates as high as $190 million in the first four years being projected.

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Shawn Dwyer is a writer, editor and content producer living in Los Angeles. You can find him on Linkedin.