Chehalis City Council to Vote on Pot Moratorium


The Chehalis City Council will vote to extend the moratorium on the production and sale of recreational and medical marijuana for another six months at its regular meeting Monday night.

The current moratorium, or suspension of action, expires on March 12.

The additional six-month moratorium will allow the city council to wait and see what direction the state will give cities about pot regulations. No clear direction has been established to date.

The state is working on rules to govern the growing and selling of legalized marijuana.

The state rules will help Chehalis create its own rules for governing the growing and distribution of marijuana, according to city attorney Bill Hillier.

“It makes little sense for the city to try to establish rules when they may differ with state regulations,” Hillier said. “Therefore the administration is proposing a six-month moratorium to allow additional time for lawmakers to formulate state rules governing the growing and distribution of marijuana.”

At the last city council meeting Feb. 11, the council directed city staff to create an ordinance to extend the existing moratorium with the intention of passing it on first and final reading Monday.

The city council previously extended the moratorium March 11, 2013 and included the retail sale of recreational marijuana to the moratorium on Nov. 18, 2013.

The moratorium was first established on Sept. 12, 2011.

“Our thought process is to continue the moratorium until we get the (final answer) from Olympia,” Hillier said at the city council’s last meeting Feb. 11.

The Centralia City Council also postponed action last month on pot sales within city limits. Centralia decided to maintain the current moratorium, which lasts until early April.

Both cities plan to monitor the state Legislature while under moratorium.

 

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