OLYMPIA, WA — Washington state began accepting applications from those seeking licenses to grow and sell recreational marijuana on Monday, beginning an initial licensing application period that lasts 30 days.
Under rules drafted by the Liquor Control Board, the state will license up to 2 million square feet statewide for marijuana production and up to 334 retail outlets.
“This is a historic first,” said Beverly Crichfield of the Department of Revenue, which will began accepting the special marijuana business license applications Monday morning.
Applications will be processed and forwarded to the Liquor Control Board for review, and should be issued early next year.
In Washington, where sales are expected to begin in late spring, the industry is open to nearly anyone – provided they’ve lived in the state for three months, pass a background check and raise any money from within the state.
After nearly a year of studies, hearings, drafts and redrafts, the Liquor Control Board came up with rules that will at least launch a recreational marijuana industry in Washington.
In Colorado, the only other state to legalize marijuana, existing medical marijuana dispensaries can begin selling for recreational use in January.
Washington voters legalized the recreational use of marijuana by adults in November 2012.