Marijuana in bars not OK, Washington State officials say
Posted: Friday, April 5, 2013 8:00 pm
SEATTLE (AP) — Washington state officials said Wednesday it’s not OK for bars to allow marijuana use, and they plan to take steps to address that.
The announcement from the state Liquor Control Board followed a report by The Associated Press about establishments in Olympia and Tacoma that allow people to get high on-site.
“It is important that the board clarify now that consuming marijuana in a state liquor-licensed establishment is not acceptable,” said board chairwoman Sharon Foster. “Public consumption of marijuana is clearly illegal under Washington’s new law.”
Board members were also concerned about the prospect of people mixing alcohol and marijuana, then getting behind the wheel.
Washington legalized pot for adults last fall, but public display and use of marijuana is barred, punishable by a civil infraction carrying a $103 fine.
The Liquor Control Board’s rules allow it to punish bars that let criminal activity happen on-site, but not bars that allow civil infractions. Regulators plans to address that loophole.
The board intends to require all liquor-license holders to ban marijuana use, said board spokesman Brian Smith. Violators could be hit with fines or see their licenses suspended or revoked.
“They don’t want to see the proliferation of this type of activity,” Smith said.
Published in The WCP 4.4.13