May 19, 2024

Tullio Corradini

Trusted Legal Source

Washington Social Equity In Cannabis Licensing Window Opens March 1

Washington Social Equity In Cannabis Licensing Window Opens March 1

The Washington Condition Liquor and Cannabis Board (“WSLCB”) announced this Wednesday, January 18, that the 30 working day window to use for a Washington Social Equity In Cannabis Retail License will open March 1, 2023.

The WSLCB will reissue 44 retail licenses to qualified candidates that rank the highest on a factors scale to “prioritize” candidates. The licenses will be anchored to particular counties. As a refresher, we’ve been adhering to the developments in Washington’s efforts to insert Section 570 to Washington Annotated Code (“WAC”) Title 314-55 from the draft procedures and their troubles, the final (and unchanged) rule, and the a short while ago launched, somewhat unhelpful Disproportionately Impacted Spot (“DIA”) mapping resource.

The license application system will be concluded electronically on the WA Section of Revenue’s enterprise licensing system, even though it is not at the moment accessible on the DOR’s web-site.

Washington social fairness cannabis license eligibility standards

To qualify for a license and just before currently being ranked according to the stage program, an applicant ought to be a Washington resident, need to have at the very least 51% of just about every social fairness retail small business, and the man or woman or people possessing the small business ought to satisfy at the very least two of the subsequent qualifications:

  • the applicant has lived in a DIA in WA for a minimum of 5 yrs in between 1980 and 2010
  • the applicant or a loved ones member of the applicant has been arrested or convicted of a cannabis offense or
  • the applicant’s residence earnings in the yr prior to distributing the application was less than the median house income in just the point out of Washington.

Whilst it is not shown especially as a qualification, applicants ought to also post a “social equity plan” describing how they will satisfy social fairness objectives, “applicant’s own or relatives historical past with the prison justice technique, like any offenses involving cannabis” and a “business prepare involving partnerships or assistance to businesses or people with connections or contributions to populations with a heritage of significant premiums of enforcement of hashish prohibition.” WAC 314-55-570(h)((i).

RCW 69.50.335 defines Social equity aims as “(i) raising the selection of cannabis retailer licenses held by social fairness applicants from disproportionately impacted places and (ii) reducing accrued damage experienced by people, family members, and nearby spots topic to serious impacts from the historic application and enforcement of cannabis prohibition legal guidelines.” Owning a social equity approach will impact eligibility and position so it is essential for applicants to put the time in to create one particular.

Washington social fairness hashish license scoring rubric

When located suitable in accordance to the standards earlier mentioned, applicants are ranked in order of precedence based mostly on a scoring process.

Eligibility necessities Level Scale
1. Lived in a disproportionately impacted spot (DIA) 40
1a. How very long have you lived in a DIA?

5y-10y = 10 details

10+ years = 20 points

2. Convicted of a drug offense? (Self) 10
2a. Convicted of a hashish offense? (Self) 40
3. Convicted of a drug offense? (Spouse and children) 5
3a. Convicted of a cannabis offense? (Relatives) 5
4. If you ended up convicted of a hashish offense, what type of sentence did you acquire:

Good = 10 factors

Served probation = 20 points

Confined to home = 40 points

Served time in jail or jail = 80 points

5. Did you or your relatives member’s incarceration keep you from finding employment? 5
6. Did you drop your property or potential to purchase a home or lease a dwelling as a end result of your convictions or arrests?  5
7. Is your residence earnings a lot less than the median household revenue in just the point out of Washington as calculated by the United States Census Bureau? 40
8. Did you own or run a health care cannabis dispensary or collective yard, licensed as a organization, prior to July 1, 2016 (10 factors)?


Did you have and work a medical cannabis dispensary or collective garden accredited as a organization in a DIA (30 points)?




30 in DIA

9. Have you held or do you at present keep 51 per cent the vast majority/managing curiosity of a state cannabis (cannabis) retailer license?

No = 10 factors

Certainly = points

Total Details (out of 310)

Washington social fairness license restrictions

If a license is be granted, there are license constraints Washington social fairness hashish applicants should know about. The far more heavy-handed (and unneeded) restrictions are:

  • No ownership variations to the application are authorized just after it has been reviewed
  • No alter of locale outside the house of the county in which the license is in the beginning issued
  • No license transfer or assumption is allowed in the initially 12 months of issuance and all social equity licenses may only be transferred or assumed by a man or woman or individuals who meet up with the definition of a social fairness software applicant for 5 years from the day the license is authorized.

These limits radically lower the transferability of a social fairness license, which are tough to transfer as it is. As we wrote on this challenge very last year “Many licensees will build their corporations into prosperous enterprises and this rule knee-caps their means to promote them in the now remarkably (and unnecessarily) limited WA industry.” The eligibility and position criteria have their have troubles, but the license limitations are only going to damage licensees–the very individuals the rule is intended to provide.

Nonetheless intrigued?

Applicants who are interested in implementing for these licenses can come across selected informational products on the WSLCB site and show up at a number of impending webinars. This system may perhaps be made extra complicated by the potentially of lawsuits remaining submitted to obstacle specific facets of the rule. If that occurs, it could freeze or complicate the application system so staying up to date with developments from the WSLCB will be important. As standard, we will also be producing about them listed here.