Judge gives Yakima County permission to shut down local cannabis grower
YAKIMA COUNTY, Wash. -- The ongoing battle between Yakima County and local cannabis farmer Sticky Budz might be nearing the end.
A Kittitas County judge made a decision Thursday to allow the county to close down the business saying they are a public nuisance and gave permission to send in officers and code enforcement to shut them down.
Jamie Muffett is the CEO of Sticky Budz and said they opened up in 2014 and they plan on fighting this to the end. He said he doesn't see what's wrong with running his small business.
"We still have rights to do business," Muffett said. "It's not like I'm operating an illegal business, I'm operating a very legal business from Washington state that gave me all my licenses and said go and do your business. Now the county commissioners want to come in after four years and say get out, that just doesn't make sense."
Yakima County took Sticky Budz to court earlier this year for not shutting down their business. County commissioners said voters decided to continue the ban of marijuana sales outside city limits.
Yakima County Deputy Prosecutor Don Anderson said the judge told the county that it has the authority to zone the county how they see fit.
Muffett said Sticky Budz is appealing the judge's decision and posting bond so they can operate while the case is under review. He said they just can't pick their business up and move it elsewhere.
"We are fighting," he said. "We have too big of an infrastructure, too big of a company to just try to move it or to shut down, it just doesn't make any sense."
Muffett said at this point they are hoping for a new commissioner to be voted in, who will take a look at how his business operates.
Sticky Budz is not the only cannabis producer operating outside city limits and the judge said the county could win in all of those cases, about 20 businesses.
The judge also said that Sticky Budz is going to have to pay court fees and attorney costs throughout this case.