Marijuana in Washington State: What You Need to Know

A New Era

Marijuana Legal In WashingtonIf you live anywhere near the state of Washington, then you are probably aware of the passing of Initiative 502 this past election. Yes, that’s the law that made smoking pot legal, for any reason. While many states currently allow the use of medical marijuana, Washington is among the first (along with Colorado) to legalize the recreational use of marijuana. While this may be good news to some people, if you are suffering from drug addiction it may make abstinence even harder. Luckily, there are several caveats in the law that will work to your advantage.

It Cannot be Smoked in Public

When the law first passed, many people thought they could now smoke the drug in public, but that is not the case. In fact, the laws surrounding marijuana use seem to more similarly mimic the laws regarding alcohol use. It is only legal to adults age 21 or over and cannot be smoked in public places. This means it will be easier to abstain because you do not have to worry about being tempted by the aroma as you are out and about.

It is Still Illegal to Sell

As of now, it is still impossible to purchase marijuana legally. It is also still illegal to grow. The state was given a full year to come up with a system to sell it in stores. It is predicted that the drug will not be available to purchase legally until 2014, so you have a little bit of time before you have to worry about being tempted by it at the local convenience store.

It is Illegal to Drive After Using It?

Yes, it is still against the law to drive after smoking pot. If you do, the consequences are the same as drinking and driving. This is an extra incentive for you to not even think about using the drug if you plan on driving.

It Will Not be Cheap

If you are worried about the drug being available for sale in 2014, maybe this will help a little bit; it is going to be expensive. According to US News, experts are guessing it will cost about $467 per ounce. Not only is that price steep, it is also going to be taxed an additional 25%.

It’s Still not Legal According to the Federal Government

If all of the above is still not enough to deter you, consider that it is still illegal according to the federal government. The best course of action may be to just ignore the state laws and focus on the federal ones.

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