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AUTHOR: Rob Hendrix


In one particular of my prior articles, I was rather preachy admittedly I spoke about becoming a “good Cannabis neighbor”. I have been a great neighbor, a great tenant, a great citizen on the City, County, State and Federal level(s). I have produced my lease payments on time, I have remitted my excise tax to the State of Washington on time or even early, I have by no means written a poor verify to a vendor and I have by no means abused my connection with any of our producer/processor pals.

And there are much more, but if I get also deeply into these subjects right here, I’ll be also definitely foreshadowing as to what the subsequent write-up will be referencing. Wink, wink!

This write-up will delve into what it signifies to be a poor neighbor, a poor influence in our nonetheless controversial business, a poor steward of our nonetheless fragile Cannabis globe in Washington State and to a good degree, the USA as a complete. 

As I could have mentioned in an earlier write-up in CLR, that is just a cute way of admitting I did in truth mention what I am about to say prior to, I was the very first retail Cannabis shop to open in my hometown of Ellensburg positioned in Central Washington State. I had the City and the County all to my lonesome for a year.

The second shop opened pretty much to the day a year following I did. Now you could have currently guessed, I have located fault with the way this shop has conducted business enterprise in my hometown. 

I’ll do my level most effective to stick with details and when sharing an opinion, I’ll warn you very first.

This second shop opened in early September 2015. They are positioned in mid Ellensburg suitable on Principal Street. Surrounded by tiny business enterprise all along Principal Street, the very first step they took in the way of “easing” into legal Cannabis in the heart of Ellensburg was to erect a sign. This sign was six feet x 10 feet, mounted on a round pole around with the sign itself about five feet off the ground. The pole was painted vibrant green about a foot in diameter. The box style letters of the sign, around 1 foot in size every single, have been of the similar colour green and formed the very simple message: LEGAL WEED. This sign was and nonetheless is, in a word, obnoxious. The business enterprise neighbors have been match to be tied and it understandably triggered pretty the uproar. So a lot for becoming a “good neighbor”. (Oh gosh, I was supposed to warn you very first if an opinion was in your future. It’ll most likely come about once more!) The sign was apparently not on their “premises” as defined by their lease/rental agreement so the size, colour and contents of the sign have been left up to the City of Ellensburg. Just after hearing several protests about the size, content material and place of mentioned sign, it was, begrudgingly, authorized by the City. The owner’s opinion was very simple “It’s legal so y’all just are gonna have to unwind!”. In addition, she had an older panel van painted with basically the similar message, even though sooner or later the LCB told her that was against the guidelines with regards to advertising/marketing.

As you could have guessed, I am not a fan of the “it’s legal so I’m going to poke you all in the eye” type of mentality. I respect these who are uncomfortable with the legalization and hence the normalization of Cannabis in our society. Frankly speaking, I was myself uncomfortable with Cannabis and Cannabis buyers prior to my becoming immersed in 502, my State’s Initiative which led to the legalization of Cannabis for adult use. I have discovered so a lot but how several of our citizens have the time or the inclination to seriously find out about what it is they claim to be against. It is less difficult just to sit back and hate it devoid of recognizing specifically why. And as strange as it could sound, I kinda realize that way of pondering. I suppose that is the purpose why I will not poke the bear, I will not condemn these who are not fans of our selected field. I empathize and I will attempt to adjust opinions one particular interaction at the time. But once more, I am providing away a further subject for a further day.

The business enterprise also has had two (two) important violations given that opening one particular was promoting to a minor and the other was minor on premises, two separate violations. The greatest argument against 502 in our State has generally been that the normalization of Cannabis in our communities will lead to higher use by minors. So how does this shop try to assuage these who harbor these issues??? She sells to a minor not extended at all following her Grand Opening!

The LCB conducts compliance checks, the law says they will have to conduct minor sales checks at least 3 (three) instances per year per State legal retail Cannabis shop. But it is not difficult to pass they by no means attempt to fool you with a fake ID, the ID generally belongs to the minor in query. They will by no means try to fool an employee with fake beards, make-up, or otherwise. The minor, who in an fascinating twist, is an actual employee of the LCB, will stroll in, hold out their Washington State driver license in plain sight and given that it is a “vertical”, which signifies when it was issued, the person was in truth beneath the age of 21, the employee(s) must be seriously at consideration. No excuses in my book. They play it straight, no twists or turns. It is generally nerve wracking and I admit my BP rises just a bit when I see the vertical ID. Ok, I consider to myself, this could be a test so keep calm, and do not screw it up. Breathe, take a further appear, do the math, and kick the tiny bastard out! I know that sounds harsh, but something or everyone that presents a threat to my livelihood is a person or anything I’m going to deal with harshly. But they failed…twice. Tends to make us all appear poor.

There are other elements of this other shop’s business enterprise strategy that I frankly do not agree with but they could extremely properly fall beneath the above referenced “opinion clause” so I’ll back off for now. But suffice it to say that men and women like us who have freely selected to get into Cannabis require to realize there are lots of citizens, great men and women several if not most of them, who have genuine issues about this path Washington State has selected to go in. We are a lot, a lot superior served in the large image and in the extended run treating all members of our respective communities with respect and understanding. We will have to be patient with these who object and we most undoubtedly do not support ourselves when we metaphorically poke our neighbors in the eye and ridicule their feelings about our business. In addition, I have by no means been in a position to predict with great reliability these of my acquaintances who have been going to be combative or supportive. And I by no means argue, rather I indicate I realize how they really feel and that I utilised to really feel the similar way, but after much more than 5 years in the business, have come to see points differently. I hope to adjust people’s with a good respect for their existing opinions.

We in the State legal Cannabis business will have to respect that this is not all a “done deal”. We have got to be undertaking it superior, neater and cleaner than any other business in the Nation now and for the foreseeable future. Now, I will climb down off my preaching pedestal and say great day to you all. Thanks for listening. Go out and make it a good day!