OLYMPIA The state Liquor Control Board has set the week of April 21-25 for the lottery to select recreational marijuana retail applicants who may receive business licenses.
“The independent, double-blind process… will produce an ordered list of applicants that the agency will use to continue its retail licensing process,” the board announced in a statement last week. “The agency expects to begin issuing retail licenses no later than the first week of July.”
According to the rules established for marijuana businesses, the state plans to give out a maximum of 334 retail licenses statewide, with a certain number allocated per county and city.
“The most populated cities within each county are allotted a maximum number of stores with the remainder at large within the county,” the board said.
In counties where the number of applicants exceed allotted licenses, the lottery was designed to be the solution.
Okanogan, Ferry and Douglas counties all have more applicants than available licenses. However, the field may be narrowing as the Liquor Control Board continues pre-qualifying applicants.
Applicants were mailed documents in late February and given 30 days to send them back to the state to determine eligibility for the lottery. The applicants were asked to provide criminal history details as well as proof of age and residency, that their business is based in Washington and that the location has “a right to real property.”
“A letter of intent to lease was acceptable,” the board said.
Of the documents mailed out, about 75 percent returned them. Of that 75 percent, between a quarter to one-half of the applicants were disqualified from the lottery because documents were incomplete.
A ranked list of the qualifying applicants is planned for release May 2 on the website, www.liq.wa.gov.
The state hired the Social and Economic Sciences Research Center of Washington State University and the accounting firm for Washington’s Lottery, Kraght-Snell of Seattle, to produce the lists in each lottery area.
“Being identified as the apparent successful applicant is not a guarantee that the selected applicant will receive a license,” the board noted. “There are multiple requirements for licensure such as the applicant must pass a criminal history and financial investigation as well as have a location that is not within 1,000 feet of a school, park or other area specified by Initiative 502 as places where children congregate.”
There are 12 original retail applicants in Okanogan County, two of which are in Omak: 4UsRetail, 23251 state Highway 20 in Okanogan; Austin Lott, 29 Horizon Flats Road STE 7 in Winthrop; Best Buds, 13801 state Highway 17 in Bridgeport; Green Valley Living, 50 Frontage Road in Tonasket; Hamsterdam, 303 Riverside Ave. in Winthrop; Jass, 2020 Main St. in Oroville; Kushington, 572 Pine St. Apt. 7 in Omak; Sage Shop, 605 Omache Drive in Omak; Simple Solutions, 1159 county Highway 7 in Tonasket; Sukhleen LLC, 2020 N. Main St. in Oroville; The Green Nugget, 210 Crumbacher Road in Tonasket; and The Roach 420, 826 state Highway 173 in Brewster.
The state will allow five retailers in Okanogan County, and one must be located in Omak.
One of three applicants in Ferry County could be granted a license: Mountain View Herbal, 4 Mid Mountain Road in Republic; Secret Herb Shop, 360 Highway 395 N. in Orient, or Weyzer Bud, 5 E. July St. in Danville.
Douglas County has 10 applicants, all in East Wenatchee: Canabis Rock Island Rd E-Wenatchee, 44 Rock Island Road STE 4; Dank Depot, 3765 Clemons St. Unit 3; Good Times Hemp, 1017 N. Baker Ave.; Green Room, 852 B Valley Mall Parkway; Green To Go, 320 Rock Island Road; Grun, 430 Rock Island Road; Just Breathe, 858 Valley Mall Parkway; Martin’s Magical Marijuana, 901 Fourth St. SE; The Happy Crop Shoppe, 50 Rock Island Road; And The Lid, 1931 NW Cascade Ave.
The state will allow one East Wenatchee retailer, and two in the county at-large.
According to the Liquor Control Board’s list, there are 78 producer applications in Okanogan County, 48 in Douglas County and 11 in Ferry County.
For processor licenses, there are 41 Okanogan County applications, 19 in Douglas and seven in Ferry.