Public Split On Pot Ban At Commission Hearing

WASHINGTON:  Speakers at a hearing Tuesday delivered sharply differing opinions on allowing recreational marijuana operations in Walla Walla County.

The 12 people who offered comments to county commissioners were evenly divided between pro and con, with half in favor and half urging prohibition. Commissioners voted 2-1 to ban it after first considering possible zoning rules.

People who urged going ahead with permitting pot operations touted the drug’s medical benefits and the potential for tax revenue and job creation. Opponents, however, said allowing marijuana to be openly grown and sold would endanger children and families and not produce any tax windfalls.

“I don’t want to be high, I just want to be pain-free and functioning,” said Mark Claiborne. Characterizing himself as “conservative enough that I make Rush Limbaugh look like a pinko,” Claiborne described how cannabis, particularly liquid extracts, has help him control pain associated with an inherited kidney disease.

 

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