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Washington State Home Grow Bill Advances

Washington State’s House of Representatives Commerce and Gaming Committee has passed a bill allowing adults over 21 years old to grow six plants and possess up to 24 ounces.

HB 2559 passed the committee on Tuesday by a vote of 7–2, bringing Washington one step closer to joining the other legalized states — all of which allow their citizens to grow cannabis at home.

The legislation would limit the total number of plants per household to six and permits landlords to restrict growing on their property. The bill, sponsored by Representative Brian Blake (D) and Cary Condatta, already has a companion bill in the Senate. Although not scheduled for its next hearing in the House, the bill is expected to move forward in the legislative process in the coming weeks.

During testimony, supporters expounded the medical uses of cannabis and said allowing home grows would expand access to veterans. Detractors said that allowing home-grown cannabis will increase youth access and that they worry about the smell.

Late last year, the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board submitted three home grow policy recommendations. Widely rejected by cannabis supporters, two of the proposals required citizens to get a permit to grow, with one of them requiring a security and tracking system. The third proposal was to keep the status quo, in which only medical cannabis patients can grow four or six plants respectively. The proposed legislation would not implement any of the WSLCB’s recommendations and is a simple, straightforward, one-page bill.  

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