First government-run marijuana store set to open in Washington

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Residents in the tiny Washington town of North Bonneville may soon have a new marijuana dealer: their own local government.


The town, situated just across the state border with Oregon, plans to open a government-run cannabis shop this Saturday, The Seattle Times reported. The move would be a first in the United States and possibly the world.

Marijuana is legal in Washington State and retail stores have been open since last summer, but it took this project a little longer to get off the ground.


The entity operating the store, the North Bonneville Public Development Authority, needed to secure financing and approval from the state Liquor Control Board before moving forward. Private investors contributed $280,000 to get the business up and running, according to a member of the development authority.

Only 1,000 or so people live in the town, so the store — called the Cannabis Corner — may hope to attract some visitors who are curious about the public-private endeavor. Any profits from the operation will go back to the community in the form of public grants, The Seattle Times reports.

Ted Hesson was formerly the immigration editor at Fusion, covering the issue from Washington, D.C. He also writes about drug laws and (occasionally) baseball. On the side: guitars, urban biking, and fiction.

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