Q&A With NPR

NPR called our shop last week! It was freaking cool. What the hell does NPR want with our homegrown little Tacoma House of Cannabis shop you say? Freaking Vape carts.

In the last week Governor Inslee announced an Executive Order to ban all flavored vaping products. The reality of that impact for marijuana businesses is still to be decided. On October 9th the Board of Health will draft legislation that if approved would ban flavored cartridges, require much more descript ingredient lists on labels, and other forms of potentially tightened regulations.

Back to earlier… When the NPR reporter called the shop, I gave my usual “Welcome to Good Burger, Home of the Good Burger, blah blah blah this is Kyle,” to which he replied, “Budtender Kyle! from the Blog? This is so and so from NPR…” I was a little stoned and thrown off at first, but then flattered that he had referenced our lowly little blog. I quickly put him on hold and handed the cordless to the boss. He was calling of course of the recent executive order from Governor Inslee.

So yea, the boss’ had a sit down with an NPR reporter. Fans of Tacoma House of Cannabis be on the look out for the article, we’ll even try to put a link to it on here, as long as they don’t say anything bad of course.

My boss gave me access to the talking points that they went over in their interview, so I decided to have a little fun and have my own Official unofficial Q&A with NPR.

So, in the universe where NPR reporters interview bloggers/budtenders for their opinion on groundbreaking topics, I imagine the conversation went a little something like this…

Q: What are you hearing from your customers about this? are you hearing anything?  

A: Most of our vape cart consumers either don’t know about the concerns in the media lately, or maybe they just don’t care. Three weeks ago when I first heard of vaping related scares in Oregon in the news maybe one or two consumers in a weeks worth of shifts asked me what I thought about the issues. In the last week, I’ve had maybe 10 consumers have concerns on the issue.

Q: How do you go about evaluating these vaping products as retailers?

A: Man you should probably freaking talk to my boss, but as a consumer I’ve always felt weird about vaping or smoking artificial flavored anything, if you ask me it should taste like what it is, not strawberries, or blueberries, or anything that isn’t cannabis derived.

Q: Has there been any noticeable impact on your business?

A: Not my business bro, I’m just the meter maid. What I do know is distillate vape carts make up 50% of the inventory of our vape cart selection, the flavored distillates being probably a quarter of the total section. If the state bans flavored distillates outright, certain processing companies will have to drastically change their business models or cease to exist.

Q: What would you like to see the state do or not do?

A: I think that on October 9th when the state’s Board of Health meets, they are going to continue the ban on all flavored vape carts and impose more regulation on the vape carts that they deem safe. Until then processors and retailers will continue to sell and buy all the flavored vape carts they can. Doesn’t really affect me to much, besides maybe having a few extra disappointed stoners to break the news too. So that sucks.

Q: Do you believe there needs to be more regulation/testing of these vaping products?

A: Honestly man I don’t think there is anything wrong with the vape cart products that we currently sell in the i-502 market. I also however do not have a problem with a bunch of white coats further regulating what is allowed into this industry, as long as where talking the science-y stuff like vape carts.

UPDATE FROM MANAGEMENT:

KNKX, a local NPR affiliate, filed their story, at this link. You can hear an audio version just below this text.

Governor Inslee signs SB5605, paving a path to force expungement of 69,000 cannabis convictions

Governor Jay Inslee signed SB5605 into law at about 4PM on Monday, May 13th 2019, after its passage in April via both the State Senate and House. The Senate did need a further reconciliation passage after the House amended the bill. The bill would require sentencing courts to vacate cannabis possession convictions, assuming that the person was above the age of 21 at the time of arrest. At the time of passage in the house, The News Tribune quoted State Senator and Bill sponsor Joe Nguyen (D-White Center) as saying:

“This proved you can do transformative justice reform issues and it’s a bipartisan thing,” said the bill’s lead sponsor, Sen. Joe Nguyen, D-White Center. “Our unjust laws of the past shouldn’t hold you back from being successful in the future.”

(MORE BELOW)

Easy I-5 Access in Tacoma on S 38th St and Pine

This could potentially be a boon to otherwise law abiding citizens who have had to uncomfortably confront this injustice on housing and employment applications, college loan applications, military service, and travel abroad. The Washington State Patrol reports that as many as 68,000 convictions could be expunged, affecting more than 58,000 individuals.

Brad Klippert (R-Kennewick) sought to limit the effect of the bill by sponsoring an amendment that would have given the courts the discretion of vacating the conviction, rather than compelling the court to do so. The amendment failed. However, through the House Appropriations Committee, the bill was further scoped to include verbiage that compelled the same action in all jurisdictions to ensure those charged and prosecuted under local, municipal ordinances were vacated, as well.

The Cannabis Alliance, was instrumental in lobbying the legislative body on this and several other bills during this and the previous sessions. The Cannabis Alliance is an industry group focused on introducing common sense laws and regulations to the industry, that benefit the industry as a whole, as opposed to a selective few.

Of further note, SB5442/HB1095 was passed by both chambers and would allow medical cannabis of certain types and dosages to be administered at public schools in accordance with a physicians instructions. Similarly, HB1401/SB5719 aim to bring Washington State Industrial Hemp laws in line with Federal laws, making it easier for Washington State Industrial Hemp based businesses to compete in the national marketplace was also passed in both houses and await the governor’s signature, on his desk.