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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Thursday, October 9, 2014
Contact:
Katie Knight Pruit, Associate Planner-Resource Stewardship Dept. at

Public Hearing for Extending Marijuana Regulations Oct. 28
Public comment taken on six month extension of interim regulations

The Thurston County Board of County Commissioners will hold a public hearing on Tuesday, October 28 to accept public testimony on extending interim zoning regulations for state-licensed marijuana producers, processors and retailers for six months.

County commissioners are considering legislation that would extend the current marijuana zoning regulations until May 11, 2015. No other changes or amendments are proposed to the interim regulations. The current interim zoning regulations for state-licensed marijuana producers, processors and retailers are set to expire November 12, but county staff have requested additional time to complete a work plan for marijuana zoning and develop a proposal for final zoning regulations.

For more detailed information about the proposal to extend the interim regulations and to view the full text of Ordinance No. 14978, go to www.co.thurston.wa.us/permitting and click on the link in the "News and Links" section.

Background:
Washington State licenses marijuana producers, processors, and retailers under RCW 69.50. The state began to take applications for licenses on November 18, 2013. Thurston County did not have regulations governing such uses in its zoning regulations, and therefore passed Ordinance No. 14978 enacting interim regulations with the intent of completing final regulations by November 12, 2014. State law allows for the interim regulations to be extended up to six months, and requires a public hearing be held for a proposed extension.

The interim regulations amended the Thurston County Code to add Chapter 20.63 for the rural county, Chapter 21.103 for the unincorporated Lacey Urban Growth Area, Chapter 22.65 for the Tumwater Urban Growth Area, and Chapter 23.91 for the unincorporated Olympia Urban Growth Area. In summary, production is permitted in most zones that permit agricultural uses, processing is permitted in most zones that permit industrial or related uses, and retailing is permitted in most commercial zones.

WHAT: Public Hearing – extending interim marijuana regulations for six months

WHEN: Tuesday, Oct. 28 at 5:30 p.m.

WHERE: County Courthouse Building One, Room 280 at 2000 Lakeridge Drive SW in Olympia, 98502


The public is invited to participate in an informed discussion, and testimony will be accepted at the October 28 hearing. Changes may be made following the public hearing. Written comments may be submitted in lieu of testimony at the hearing. Written comments can be emailed to Katie Knight Pruit, Associate Planner, at PruitK@co.thurston.wa.us, or mailed to Thurston County Resource Stewardship Department, Land Use and Permitting, 2000 Lakeridge Drive SW, Olympia, WA 98502. The deadline for written comments is 4 p.m. on Tuesday, October 28.



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County Commissioners:

Carolina Mejia
District 1

Gary Edwards
District 2

Tye Menser
District 3