Potential pot growers in Washington may have to change their plans. The Washington State Liquor Control board has imposed new restrictions on the amount of marijuana that can be grown in the state. Growers now get just one license — as opposed to the three previously allowed — and production has been limited to just 70 percent of what growers had been promised, according to seattlepi.com. To put it in perspective, growers who had applied for three licenses with a total of 90,000 square growing feet are now getting one location of 21,000 square feet. Those who have already heavily invested in space for the new recreational marijuana market could be looking at huge financial disappointments. — M.C.
The passage of I-502 and the legalization of marijuana will finally start to produce revenue for Washington state in mid-2015. A report released by the state Economic and Revenue Forecast Council on Wednesday predicts that the recreational marijuana market will bring close in to $190 million over the next four years, with $51 million expected in the first biennium. Crosscut's John Stang will write about the impact on the state budget. — M.C.
You're suing Washington?
Wyoming might take Washington state to court in order to get its huge coal exports to Washington's ports. The Associated Press reported that the Wyoming Legislature has $500,000 in its draft state budget allocated for coal train legal fights. Washington is currently debating coal train and coal port issues. Montana has also threatened legal action, alleging that the Washington environmental review process could interfere with federal control of interstate commerce. — J.S.
Today in Olympia
- A Senate oil transportation safety bill might be revived in the next three weeks before the current legislative session ends. Senate Republican Leader, Mark Schoesler, R-Ritzville, said Wednesday that the bill — which failed to make a 5 p.m. Tuesday deadline for a floor vote — could be resurrected. Maybe as an amendment to another bill. On Tuesday, the Democratic-controlled House passed its own oil-transportation safety bill, which is now in the Senate. The House bill confers more regulatory power on the state than the Republicans want. — J.S.
- State Rep.Janéa Holmquist Newbry, R-Moses Lake, moved her name from the "maybe" column to the "for sure" column Wednesday, announcing her candidacy to run for the 4th District congressional seat. Franklin County Commissioner Brad Peck and Franklin County farmer Clint Didier are also officially Republican candidates to replace retiring U.S. Rep. Doc Hastings. In addition, former Washington Agricultural Director Dan Newhouse, state Sen. Sharon Brown of Kennewick, Gavin Seim of Ephtrata, and Kennewick attorney George Cicotte are exploring Republican candidacies. Independent Josh Ramirez is alson considering a run. — J.S.
Broadband: Portland scores
Seattleites hoping for local installation of the Google Fiber Internet service — or any other high speed broadband service — may be out of luck. The company announced 34 U.S. cities as possible sites for expansion, but Seattle wasn't one of them. Among the chosen were nine metro areas, including Portland, our neighbor to the south. The company hopes to bring the service to some of the areas by the end of the year. So, why not Seattle? Geekwire reached out to Google and got a vague statement about needing to "concentrate our efforts on just a few areas for now." — M.C.
Burglars on camera
Everyone wants to go viral, right? Except maybe the burglars who broke into the Federal Way home of Chris Beaver, who had recently installed a camera and sound system to watch and talk to his two pugs while he was at work. KIRO-TV reports Beaver's cell phone signaled him that there was activity inside the house; when he looked at his phone, he expected video of his pugs at play. Instead, a strange man and woman were ransacking his house. Fortunately, when the pair headed out with their haul, a crowd of Federal Way officers was waiting. — J.C.
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