Washington State lawmakers next month will yet again weigh whether to allow residents to grow marijuana at home, extending a debate in the legislature that’s stretched on for years.
A bipartisan bill introduced late last week would let adults 21 and older grow up to six cannabis plants and keep any marijuana produced by those plants. It’s a policy that resembles similar provisions in neighboring Oregon, as well as those in Colorado, California and nearly every other state that has legalized marijuana.
Whether the new bill has a fighting chance to be enacted, however, is anyone’s guess—though its sponsor says it will at least get a vote in the committee she chairs. Washington lawmakers have repeatedly introduced homegrow bills going back at least to 2015, but so far the measures have languished. Not a single one has made it to a full floor vote.
The latest bill, HB 1019, prefiled last week by Reps. Shelley Kloba (D) and Drew MacEwen (R), is nearly identical to last year’s legislation, which itself was a reintroduction of a measure that stalled a year before. Previous years saw separate efforts crash and burn, too.
Rep. Brian Blake (D), who previously sponsored the homegrow push, is no longer in office. “With him leaving the legislature in January, I did not want his efforts to go to waste,” Kloba told Marijuana Moment in an email. “I wanted to make sure this bill was introduced and heard.”
The measure would allow adults 21 and older to grow up to six cannabis plants per person, although no single household could grow more than 15 plants total. The plants would need to be clearly marked with the grower’s name, address and date of birth, as well as when they were planted. Growers would not need to register with the