Feds to meet with WA gov about legal pot

Washington State Rules
FILE - From left, Andre Edwards, G.E. Montoya, and J. Smiley pass around a glass pipe as they smoke marijuana, Thursday, Dec. 6, 2012, just after midnight at the Space Needle in Seattle. Possession of marijuana became legal in Washington state at midnight, and several hundred people gathered at the Space Needle to smoke and celebrate the occasion, even though the new law does prohibit public use of marijuana. (Ted S. Warren, AP Photo)

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Gov. Jay Inslee is set to meet Tuesday with the two top federal prosecutors in Washington to discuss the Justice Department’s concerns about the state’s legal marijuana law.

This official logo from Washington state must be on all authorized marijuana products in the state. (May 17, 2013)
This official logo from Washington state must be on all authorized marijuana products in the state. (May 17, 2013)

U.S. Attorneys Jenny Durkan of Seattle and Mike Ormsby of Spokane are traveling to Olympia to speak with Inslee and Attorney General Bob Ferguson.

Inslee’s office characterized it as a “follow-up conversation” after the DOJ announced late last month that it would not sue Washington or Colorado over plans to tax and regulate marijuana sales for adults over 21.

The DOJ said it has eight priorities it wants states to address if they regulate pot, including keeping marijuana off the black market and keeping it away from kids. Topics for discussion at Tuesday’s meeting could include how the state will punish pot stores that sell to teens or allow guns on premises.

Inslee and Ferguson also have submitted written testimony for a U.S. Senate hearing Tuesday on the DOJ’s response to marijuana legalization. The testimony describes steps Washington is taking to address the DOJ’s priorities and expresses concern that federal restrictions on marijuana-related banking will make it more difficult for the state to monitor and audit pot businesses.

— The Associated Press

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