Oh Traceability. How do I love thee?
I know many of you are on the front lines of how decisions at the government level trickle down to actual implementation, and I want you to know that your tribulations are not forgotten. The Alliance is continuing to work for you, our members, to create a vital, ethical and sustainable cannabis industry.
In June, The Alliance had the opportunity to meet with Pat Kohler, the incoming Deputy Director at the LCB. She will be taking Peter Antollin’s job, which means she is tasked with heading up traceability, currently LEAF/MJFreeway that we all know and love (insert sarcasm), as well as the System Modernization Project (SMP), which is basically the project that will take the WSLCB’s mainframe computer from a 1980’s Atari to a system that was designed in the 21st century. Kohler used to be the Director of the WSLCB (i.e. she had Rick Garza’s job) and talked about how well she and him work together: that her strengths are his weaknesses and vice versa. Kohler just finished a very technical project for the Department of Licensing (DOL), updating their licensing system, and came in on time and under budget. I am optimistic about her appointment, and while the timing is not ideal (Antolin leaves -> LEAF contract’s fate needs to be decided -> Kohler starts), The Alliance is prepared and well positioned to help get Kohler up to date with the industries needs and concerns.
The Alliance also had a sit down meeting with the Governor’s office regarding Traceability. Needless to say, The Alliance’s standpoint was not all butterflies and rainbows, but we had a wonderful conversation about the timeline of Washington Traceability, what got us here, and some solutions to move forward in a positive direction. Nothing we told the Governor’s office was a surprise to them; we basically reconfirmed what they already knew. The silver lining was our ability to strengthen that relationship with the Governor’s office. We are confident that our presentation and performance created a bridge that the Governor’s office knows they have access to a resource, The Cannabis Alliance, that represents the entire cannabis industry, and not just any one particular section. And they are already reaching back out for more information!
Probably one of the most frustrating things for me personally, is how slow things move at the governmental level. These issues are negatively affecting our ability to do business on a day to day level, minute to minute, making things SO MUCH HARDER than they have to be. And yet it takes days, weeks, months, years to change things above. But The Alliance is committed to you. We are committed to follow through and to continue to push for those changes that YOU need to be successful. We will continue to tell your stories. To personalize what is happening to the boots on the ground. And we will win.
Thank you for your patience. Your understanding. Your perseverance. And your faith in us.
President, The Cannabis Alliance
Owner/Operator, Trail Blazin’ Productions