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It raised eyebrows, one of the items on the agenda for the August 31st Liquor Control Board meeting.

   Proposal on agenda concerned permanently allowing minors 16-under on pot business premises.

The original agenda item read:

"Rules Petition Review and Consideration Presenter – Robert DeSpain, Rules and Policy Coordinator-- Request to amend WAC 314-55-015 to allow minors under 16 years of age to be allowed on licensed cannabis premises - Submitted by Crystal Oliver"

That got people's attention, especially due to a lack of background information as well as a lack of explanation. Did this proposal include stores? Based upon the definition of the word premises, possibly yes.

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The Communications Director for the Liquor Control and Cannabis Board, Brian E. Smith, sent us some clarification as to what this was about:

"The petition stems from an “allowance” or temporary amnesty  from the rules that the LCB put in place to address issues that arose during COVID.  That allowance allowed minor children of licensed producers and processors (wholesalers) under the age 16 to be present on their licensed premises.  It did not allow kids to enter retail stores -- that remained prohibited.   Essentially, the original request came from eastern Washington producers who could not access child care during COVID.  The temporary allowance ends on Sept. 30, 2022. The petition from Ms. Oliver was to make it permanent. The Board today elected to explore the request."

He said the board may not choose to enter the rulemaking, but is willing to open the public process, he says, which is outlined by the Administrative Procedures Act.

So IF this were to be made permanent, it only applies to the pre-sale part of the pot business, not the final part, which is retail sales in pot stores.


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