WASHINGTON: Andrew Elliott is hoping to score one of the golden tickets of Washington’s legal marijuana industry: a license to sell pot, granted in part on a series of high-tech lotteries held this week.
He almost didn’t get a shot. Just days before the lotteries began, the state’s Liquor Control Board informed him he had been disqualified because his proposed pot shop in Seattle’s Queen Anne neighborhood was too close to an area frequented by children — a game arcade which, it turns out, doesn’t exist.
Thanks to quick work by his lawyer, Stephanie Boehl, the board agreed at the last minute to put Elliott back in the Seattle lottery. But some others disqualified haven’t been so lucky.
Interviews with applicants and their attorneys detail a number of reported problems, from one rejection based on a typo to potential issues with the state’s software to technicalities that torpedoed what might otherwise have been strong applications.
Most troubling, they say, is that some people weren’t informed until this week, after the lotteries had started, that they’d been disqualified, leaving them no meaningful way to appeal what might have been mistaken decisions by the board.