Washington State Enlists Help of Marijuana Consultant
by Lewis & Laws
Washington and Colorado Break New Ground with Marijuana Laws
Ever since Washington became one of the first two states to pass laws legalizing the recreational use of marijuana, the state's legislature has been working to develop rules for the emerging pot industry. In fact, Washington state recently posted a job advertisement for an official marijuana consultant. As of the past couple of days, the state has tentatively chosen a Massachusetts-based firm led by Mark A.R. Kleiman, who is a UCLA professor. His firm, Botec Analysis Corp., has evaluated government programs and provided consulting related to drug abuse, crime and public health in the past, and Professor Kleiman has written several major works in these areas.
One of Kleiman's most notable works, "Marijuana Legalization: What Everyone Needs to Know," has been labeled as a "must read" for those who want to understand more about the pros, cons, and fine points of marijuana use and abuse. From what he has written so far, it appears that Kleiman's research has led him to believe that heavy-handed law enforcement tactics such as jail are not preventing drug crimes or violent crimes. He makes the point that America's drug laws are toughest on minorities and yet they have done little to curb or slow the growth and spread of drugs and drug use.
Washington is supposed to start selling marijuana in December, and they are trying to establish the technical aspects of marijuana sales with the help of a consultant. Everything from determining how many growers and stores there should be, to figuring out if marijuana should be tested to ensure that people don't get sick, is up in the air. Some of the categories that Kleiman and his firm will be helping with include "product and industry knowledge", quality testing, and the development of regulations.
Colorado and Washington are breaking new ground with these laws that made it legal for adults over 21 to walk in and buy up to an ounce of heavily taxed cannabis. Marijuana is the most frequently used drug in the United States, and approximately 4% of American adults smoke pot at least once a year. Studies show that occupational marijuana use is rarely seriously harmful, but it does bring about symptoms such as rapid heart rate, increased blood pressure, increased rate of breathing, dry mouth, and slowed reaction time.
In the past, one of the main concerns about pot is that it was a "gateway" drug, which means that smoking marijuana can make someone more likely to try heroin, ecstasy, cocaine, and other "hard drugs". This is not necessarily true and has never been proven, but marijuana is addictive psychologically and is possibly physically addictive as well. The penalties for drug crimes in Washington can include jail time, costly fines, rehabilitation, community service, and more; so it is important to be fully informed about your rights and the state's laws regarding drug use.
If you have been accused of a drug crime involving marijuana or any other drug, call one of our Seattle drug crime attorneys today and schedule a free consultation. The time to take action and protect your future is now!