Below is my letter to the Senate Committee on Commerce & Labor who are having a public hearing in the Cherberg Building tomorrow, Friday November 20, 2015 at 10:00 AM for SB 8063 which will allow all adults to grow 6 cannabis plants per home.
If you cannot make it to the hearing please comment on the bill HERE –
The comment button is in dark green next to where is says SB 6083 – 2015-16
This is your chance to make a difference and help preserve medical cannabis in Washington!
Here’s my letter- write your own! Find your voice! The time is now!!
My name is Sharon Whitson. I’m a PTSA Member & a proud soccer mom who lives in Kirkland’s 45th District. I’m also the General Manager of Seattle Hempfest, Washington’s oldest cannabis business going into our 25th year. Our hemp boutique is in Seattle’s 46th District.
As a Washington citizen I’d like to see our recreational system evolve by allowing us the same rights & successes we see emerging in other states, like home grow & reasonable tax rates.
As a cancer survivor I understand the medicinal qualities of cannabis and want to assure that patients are not suffering under legalization. That’s not what Washington voted for. We didn’t vote to end medical cannabis which we enacted in 1998, we voted to stop sending people to jail for smoking cannabis and to begin retail sales to adults 21 and over. We anticipated a sensible system would be enacted by our legislators, not one that hurts some of our states most vulnerable.
Allowing everyone to grow 6 plants preserves the right to grow and assures that patients are protected from further having their rights eroded. This is the compassionate & right thing to do.
We have a huge opportunity here. We have the world’s largest legalization region. Oregon, Washington, & Alaska have 11 million citizens soon to be joined by California’s almost 39 million. We have a responsibility to create a system of commerce that can eventually cross state lines & is similar to our neighbors who both allow home grow.
By sequestering ourselves we’re hurting Washington brands who will not emerge as national leaders as legalization spreads throughout our nation. Polling shows that 58% of people nationally approve of cannabis legalization. This is a national industry in its infancy and we have a chance to be its leader.
Besides serving medical patients supporting SB 6083 and home grows of 6 plants also is going to start a thriving hobby market for home enthusiasts. This will help drive industry like – home grow kits, closet grow systems built for 6 plants, nutrients, lights, books, seminars, & classes, the list is endless!
An example of this is the beer industry & the home brewing of beer industry which exist side by side today and both flourish. This actually gave birth to the craft beer industry which is now the fastest growing segment of the beer industry. How exciting to be at the birth of a new industry and have the opportunity to be laying the seeds from which new business will be sown.
Home grow will not hurt business, it will create more business.
I also want to point out that Washington made $2 million dollars in our first month of recreational sales. Colorado did $5 million in the first week. Oregon, our neighbor to the south did a whopping $11 million in their first week. Oregon did 22 times the business in the first week of operations as Washington, 22 TIMES! That is profound. These figures show that home grow is not a threat.