Washington Home Grow Cannabis Bill Advances Through Committee

Written by Neil Juneja, Founder & Managing Partner of Gleam Law, PLLC. 

Despite technically being the first state to legalize the adult use of cannabis, Washington lags behind every other legal market in one way: home grow protections. Every other state that legalized cannabis has also legalized the ability to grow a regulated amount of cannabis at home. Washington state could be well on its way to following their lead.

Washington’s House Bill 2559 would legalize home-grown cannabis, limiting it to six plants per household. The bill allows landlords to restrict renters from growing on their property and will likely have rules for keeping homegrown cannabis out of the public’s sight. This is very similar to other home grow bills throughout the country, including California, Colorado, and Washington DC.

According to Ganjaprenuer, the committee heard testimony from those in favor of the bill and those against. Those in favor extolled the medical virtues of cannabis and claimed home grow laws would allow v­eterans more access to the plant. It should be noted that cannabis has shown promise as a treatment for those suffering from extreme cases of PTSD, a disorder that affects thousands of veterans.

Those against the bill expressed worry that home grows would increase youth access to marijuana and concern that the smell would be too pungent. In other legal states like Colorado that have home grow laws, there has been no increase in youth consumption of the drug. According to Reuters, teen marijuana use is lower than the national average.

House Bill 2559 passed committee on Tuesday with a 7-2 vote. It is expected to move forward through the house in the coming weeks, but it is too early to tell the future of the bill in Senate.