VANCOUVER Towns across Southwest Washington were trying to figure out how to handle new marijuana laws after the state s liquor control board began accepting business license applications Monday.
Hundreds of people applied for licenses just hours after the state began accepting applications to grow, process and sell pot under Initiative 502.
But many Wash. towns were still trying to figure out how legalized marijuana fits into their communities.
On Monday, Vancouver city officials established a temporary moratorium on applying for permits until June.
Some Vancouver residents disagreed with the city s stance.
It s now legal, technically, to posses but it s not legal to buy, said Janet Edwards, a Vancouver resident who wants to become a pot retailer. I d ask that we move quickly so we can provide reasonable access to these products.
But Clark County officials said others had concerns about how drug sales would affect the community.
County leaders held the first of four meetings Monday to discuss where marijuana facilities could be located and fielded questions from residents.
I like the aspect that it ll be out in the open which makes it easier for parents to monitor what is going on, said resident Julie Sabo.
But city leaders in another SW Wash. town were taking a different stance on the new law.
Officials in North Bonneville said they want to sell pot in a city-run marijuana shop.
The reason we re setting up this way is to make sure the law is followed, not broken, said Mayor Donald Stevens.
But some residents had concerns.
It would be a lot of stoned people walking around our town, influencing our children, said Brian Dudley.
Still, towns have little control on who is allowed to have a license to grow, sell or distribute the drug.
The Washington State Liquor Control Board said they would accept marijuana business license applications until Dec. 18.
All applicants must undergo background checks, including North Bonneville city officials.
KGW Reporter Mike Benner contributed to this report.
Background: Pot milestone: WA takes business applications