Gene Johnson http://kplu.org en FBI Balks At Background Checks For Wash. Pot License Applicants http://kplu.org/post/fbi-balks-background-checks-wash-pot-license-applicants <p style="margin-bottom: 20px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; font-family: 'Palatino Linotype', 'Book Antiqua', serif; line-height: 20px; color: rgb(54, 54, 54);">The FBI is refusing to run nationwide background checks on people applying to run legal marijuana businesses in Washington state, even though it has conducted similar checks in Colorado — a discrepancy that illustrates the quandary the Justice Department faces as it allows the states to experiment with regulating a drug that's long been illegal under federal law.</p><p> Fri, 14 Mar 2014 17:14:23 +0000 Gene Johnson 14851 at http://kplu.org FBI Balks At Background Checks For Wash. Pot License Applicants 1st Wash. State Pot License Goes To Spokane Grower Named Green http://kplu.org/post/1st-wash-state-pot-license-goes-spokane-grower-named-green <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">Washington state's first legal marijuana license is going to a guy named Green.</p><div style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;"><p>The Associated Press has learned that Spokane grower Sean Green, the chief executive of a company called Kouchlock Productions, is due to be issued a producer-processor license at the state Liquor Control Board meeting in Olympia on Wednesday morning.</p> Tue, 04 Mar 2014 23:57:52 +0000 Gene Johnson 14433 at http://kplu.org 1st Wash. State Pot License Goes To Spokane Grower Named Green Justices: People Have Right To Privacy In Texts http://kplu.org/post/justices-people-have-right-privacy-texts <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">Washington's Supreme Court says people have a reasonable expectation of privacy in the text messages they send from their phones — even if they can't know for sure who might be reading them.</p><p> Thu, 27 Feb 2014 18:57:48 +0000 Gene Johnson 14212 at http://kplu.org Justices: People Have Right To Privacy In Texts Judge Tosses Out Author Ann Rule's Lawsuit Against Seattle Weekly http://kplu.org/post/judge-tosses-out-author-ann-rules-lawsuit-against-seattle-weekly <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">A judge has thrown out true-crime author Ann Rule's defamation lawsuit against a weekly Seattle newspaper.</p><div style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;"><p>Rule sued the Seattle Weekly and freelance author Rick Swart over a piece published in 2011 that accused her of "sloppy storytelling" and criticized her book about an Oregon woman who killed her husband.</p> Wed, 26 Feb 2014 20:16:45 +0000 Gene Johnson 14148 at http://kplu.org State Attorney General: Cities Can Block Pot Business http://kplu.org/post/state-attorney-general-cities-can-block-pot-business <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson says cities and counties can block licensed marijuana businesses from operating.</p><div style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;"><p>In a <a href="http://atg.wa.gov/uploadedFiles/FosterAGO2014No02.pdf" target="_blank">long-awaited opinion</a> Thursday, Ferguson says the state's legal marijuana law, Initiative 502, leaves local governments the option of adopting moratoriums or bans that prohibit licensed grow operations, processing facilities or retail shops from their jurisdictions.</p> Thu, 16 Jan 2014 19:36:23 +0000 Gene Johnson & Paula Wissel 12653 at http://kplu.org State Attorney General: Cities Can Block Pot Business Wash. State Faces Prospect Of Too Many Pot Growers http://kplu.org/post/wash-state-faces-prospect-too-many-pot-growers <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">Washington state could be facing a curious economic problem: too many pot growers.</p><div style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;"><p>More than 2,600 applications have been submitted to produce the marijuana that will be sold at state-licensed stores when Washington's legal marijuana industry opens for business this year.</p> Tue, 07 Jan 2014 18:04:12 +0000 Gene Johnson 12345 at http://kplu.org Wash. State Faces Prospect Of Too Many Pot Growers Liquor Control Board Recommends Limit Of 6 Plants Per Medical Pot Patient http://kplu.org/post/liquor-control-board-recommends-limit-6-plants-medical-pot-patient <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">Washington state is looking at a major overhaul of its medical marijuana system, to avoid competition with the recreational market and to avert any crackdowns from the federal government.</p><div style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;"><p>The state's Liquor Control Board on Wednesday approved its <a href="http://www.liq.wa.gov/marijuana/medical-mj_recommendations" target="_blank">final recommendations</a> to the Legislature about how it believes the largely unregulated medical system can be brought under the umbrella of Initiative 502.</p> Wed, 18 Dec 2013 21:34:43 +0000 Gene Johnson 11856 at http://kplu.org Liquor Control Board Recommends Limit Of 6 Plants Per Medical Pot Patient In Wake of Suit, BNSF to Offer Benefits to Same-Sex Spouses http://kplu.org/post/wake-suit-bnsf-offer-benefits-same-sex-spouses <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">The nation's largest freight rail carriers have announced they will provide health benefits to the same-sex spouses of their employees, one day after legally married, gay engineers filed a federal lawsuit in Seattle.</p> Thu, 05 Dec 2013 00:00:09 +0000 Gene Johnson 11430 at http://kplu.org In Wake of Suit, BNSF to Offer Benefits to Same-Sex Spouses Judge: Two Wash. Towns Failed Poor Defendants' Rights http://kplu.org/post/judge-two-wash-towns-failed-poor-defendants-rights <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">A federal judge has ruled that two Washington cities have systematically violated the rights of poor defendants to have legal representation.</p><div style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;"><p>The state chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union sued Mount Vernon and Burlington two years ago, alleging that public defenders there were so overworked that they amounted to little more than "a warm body with a law degree."</p> Wed, 04 Dec 2013 19:55:52 +0000 Gene Johnson 11420 at http://kplu.org Two Same-Sex Couples Sue BNSF over Health Benefits http://kplu.org/post/two-same-sex-couples-sue-bnsf-over-health-benefits <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Two workers are suing&nbsp;</span>BNSF<span style="line-height: 1.5;">, one of the nation's largest rail companies, saying their same-sex spouses have repeatedly been denied health benefits even though gay marriage is legal in Washington state.</span></p><p>The lawsuit filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Seattle states&nbsp;BNSF refused to add the spouses of locomotive engineer Michael Hall and conductor Amie Garrand to their plans.</p><p> Wed, 04 Dec 2013 01:04:34 +0000 Gene Johnson & Paula Wissel 11403 at http://kplu.org Two Same-Sex Couples Sue BNSF over Health Benefits Family Calls for Release of Wash. Woman Held in Mexico http://kplu.org/post/family-calls-release-wash-woman-held-mexico <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15px; line-height: 15px;"><span style="font-size: 15px;">The family of a Washington state woman who leads a vigilante police force in Mexico is pushing for her to be released after three months in custody on kidnapping allegations.</span></p><div style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15px; line-height: 15px;"><p>Supporters of Nestora Salgado say the charges are trumped up. The International Human Rights Clinic at Seattle University School of Law on Monday petitioned the United Nations for her release.</p> Tue, 26 Nov 2013 19:17:32 +0000 Gene Johnson 11305 at http://kplu.org More Drivers Test Positive for Pot in Wash. State http://kplu.org/post/more-drivers-test-positive-pot-wash-state <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">New figures from the Washington State Patrol show that more drivers have tested positive for marijuana since the state legalized the drug last year.</p><div style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;"><p>In the first six months of 2013, the patrol's crime lab says, 745 people tested positive for marijuana. Typically there are about 1,000 positive pot tests on drivers in a full year.</p> Thu, 21 Nov 2013 18:40:14 +0000 Gene Johnson 11200 at http://kplu.org More Drivers Test Positive for Pot in Wash. State Colo., Wash. Courts Weigh Lawyer Pot Use, Advice http://kplu.org/post/colo-wash-courts-weigh-lawyer-pot-use-advice <p>Seattle attorney Kurt Boehl is happy to think he's contributing to the success of Washington's grand experiment in regulating marijuana by advising his clients on how to navigate the industry's legal complexities.</p><p>But there's a worry that his efforts could earn him an ethics complaint. After all, marijuana is illegal under federal law, and lawyers aren't supposed to help their clients break the law.</p><p> Tue, 05 Nov 2013 21:14:43 +0000 Gene Johnson 10845 at http://kplu.org Colo., Wash. Courts Weigh Lawyer Pot Use, Advice Will Wash. State's Legal Pot Taxes Go to Health Care? http://kplu.org/post/will-wash-states-legal-pot-taxes-go-health-care <p>One selling point of Washington's new legal marijuana law was that a huge chunk of pot-related tax revenue would be devoted to health coverage for low-income residents.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">But it's not clear the money will go to health care after all.</span><img alt="Description: --break-&gt;" height="3" src="file://localhost/Users/martha/Library/Caches/TemporaryItems/msoclip/0/clip_image002.png" style="line-height: 1.5;" width="3" /><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Under the federal Affordable Care Act, also known as "</span>Obamacare<span style="line-height: 1.5;">," a would-be recipient of the pot taxes— Washington's Basic Health Plan—is being eliminated. The plan, which provided low-cost health insurance to the working poor, is being absorbed by Medicaid and will end Dec. 31, according the state Health Care Authority.</span> Thu, 31 Oct 2013 17:31:58 +0000 Gene Johnson & Gabriel Spitzer 10743 at http://kplu.org Will Wash. State's Legal Pot Taxes Go to Health Care? Panel Examines Future of Medical Pot in Wash. http://kplu.org/post/panel-examines-future-medical-pot-wash <p><span style="color: rgb(52, 52, 52); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 18px;">As the proprietor of a medical marijuana dispensary in Seattle, Dawn Darington has seen patients wracked by AIDS and cancer. She's also seen "patients" who show up for a free pot brownie and never come back.</span><br style="color: rgb(52, 52, 52); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 18px;" /><br style="color: rgb(52, 52, 52); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 18px;" /><span style="color: rgb(52, 52, 52); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 18px;">Now, Washington is pushing forward with plans to entice the latter into its new world of legal, taxed recreational pot, and advocates like Darington say they're worried about where that's going to leave those who actually need cannabis.</span> Sun, 20 Oct 2013 21:30:00 +0000 Gene Johnson 10569 at http://kplu.org Panel Examines Future of Medical Pot in Wash.