new approach oregon marijuana legalization
Medical Marijuana Policy

Oregon Medical Marijuana Program Is Safe, For Now

oregon senate bill 844 medical marijuanaFor the last couple of weeks I have been posting articles urging people to contact their Oregon Senators and let them know that you opposed Senate Bill 844. Oregon Senate Bill 844 would have drastically and harmfully altered the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program. Among the changes that the bill was calling for included:

Grow sites in residential areas will only be able to grow for 2 patients maximum (12 plants)
Non-residential locations will only be able to grow for 8 total (48 plants)
Growers will be subjected to a fee and inspections (even for personal grows)
Growers will have to report monthly to the state and keep records up to 7 years
Any violation of the rules allows OHA to contact law enforcement

There were other harmful changes included in the bill and its amendments, but those were the ones that I was sending call to action alerts about. After a lot of hard work by many Oregon activists and members of the medical marijuana community, I’m happy to say that Senate Bill 844 has failed, at least for now. Per Marijuana Politics:

The Oregon Joint Committee on Implementing Measure 91 failed to pass Senate Bill 844, a medical marijuana regulatory bill, that began as an OLCC Measure 91 “technical fix” bill, last night and currently are at an impasse over how they will move forward. Rightfully, patients, advocates and concerned citizens made their voices heard after legislators shirked the major duty in front of them, implementing Measure 91, to unnecessarily decrease patient gardens, impose burdens on providers and allow city councils and county commissions deny safe access points for patients.

Members of this joint committee were certainly advised by numerous advocates, patients and lobbyists to hold off on major medical marijuana restrictions until after Measure 91 gets finally implemented in the latter half of 2016. Jumping the gun to restrict patient gardens, impose new fees and institute more governmental intrusion into the lives of the medical marijuana community has been a huge blunder by several members of the committee, led by Portland Democrat Ginny Burdick.

Senator Burdick was joined by Sen. Lee Beyer and the four Republicans on the committee to not only restrict patients access to medicine by decreasing gardens, but also by allowing cities and counties to ban medical marijuana dispensaries. With the March 1st moratorium allowed by Senate Bill 1531 finally behind us, it is time for patients across the state to have the same safe access as patients in Portland and the other locales allowing dispensaries. Some business interests, operating in Portland and other areas without bans, have been more than willing to continue hurting patients’ safe access to medicine by supporting SB 844, but it is great to see activists and public servants willing to stand up for the rights of sick and disabled patients, regardless of where they may live.

This is a great thing for the medical marijuana patients of Oregon, as well as medical marijuana growers across the state. The fight is not over, as I’m sure there will be more attempted attacks on the OMMP, but at least we can all take a breath and prepare for that next battle. I tip my hat to all of the people that worked on this effort. There are too many to name in this article, and many that worked behind the scenes and weren’t looking for credit, so I will just say that you know who you are, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart!

  • Sarijuana

    Great victory. Stay vigilant.

  • SilentPatriot

    Welcome to the unemployment line, Senator Burdick (very fitting name).

  • Old Soul

    Outstanding work on your part too Johnny. A tip of the hat also to Sen. Floyd Prozanski who advocates for the medical community. Also, not many are aware of the effects of the recreational vs medical and the suppression of the OMMA for a market grab. Please don’t let greed overwhelm and water down the quality of medical grade cannabis Oregon is known for.

    Namaste’

    • Drew Lunn

      Though I personally support the OMMA, and it’s patients and caregivers, I never cared for the BS medical vs recreational cannabis distinction. Cannabis is cannabis, and THC has therapeutic value just as CBD, CBN, and various other cannabinoids do. The truth of the matter is that we still know very little about any of them. Any cannabis of decent potency of one or another cannabinoid is of some medical use to someone for some ailment. Any argument suggesting otherwise is a disingenuous attempt to place the import of the freedoms possessed by those with an Medical Marijuana card above those without one.

      • Bongstar420

        When a patient has the choice of .25g per day of CBD flower which effectively relieves their medical condition or 1.25g per day of THC which less effectively relieves their medical condition, which do you think they will choose given the lack of doctors supervision?

        Hint: they like to get high

        • been there

          Please explain why you think that feeling good be demonized.

          • been there

            insert “should” between “good” and “be”. thanx

      • Old Soul

        Medical cannabis in Oregon that is sold in dispensaries is thoroughly vetted, tested, and even tasted. Rec weed is not at this time.

      • Our Bongstar “friend” is probably a narc.

        1.25g per day of THC is an incredible amount. 10 mg will get a novice
        VERY high. He is suggesting 125 times as much. i.e. he knows nothing.

        • Old Soul

          He’s not a narc, he’s a fountain of ego driven garbage and lies.

      • And think about this:

        Every tax, every regulation comes with it an army of bureaucrats and behind that an army (with guns) of enforcers.

    • rob

      Where’s that email?

      • Old Soul

        what email?

        • rob

          You wanted a test result, I need ur email

          • Old Soul

            Do you agree to terms?

          • rob

            (nevermind they never posted. email me and I can send u my responses)..Go read my posts, send me your email and we can continue offline. We’ll send to both labs. I don’t know what your battle is with me. What, I’m not allowed to hate outdoor? I hate sticks. And outdoor has a lot of thick sticks.. even for sugar leaves. I guarantee most outdoor is worse quality than indoor. Is there bad indoor? For sure! U don’t seem to understand, my original statement was why would my quality and practices change if I switched to rec? Y would I just start blasting pesticides and not rinsing fertilizers? Send me your email and we can continue offline. I’m done with the public banter. If u don’t send it I’m assuming this is all just bullshit. I’ll unprivate my Sig. Email me and we can discuss.

          • rob

            my replies wont post email me or PM me and we’ll work it out

          • rob

            nevermind they never posted. email me and I can send u my responses)..Go read my posts, send me your email and we can continue offline. We’ll send to both labs. I don’t know what your battle is with me. What, I’m not allowed to hate outdoor? I hate sticks. And outdoor has a lot of thick sticks.. even for sugar leaves. I guarantee most outdoor is worse quality than indoor. Is there bad indoor? For sure! U don’t seem to understand, my original statement was why would my quality and practices change if I switched to rec? Y would I just start blasting pesticides and not rinsing fertilizers? Send me your email and we can continue offline. I’m done with the public banter. If u don’t send it I’m assuming this is all just bullshit. I’ll unprivate my Sig. Email me and we can discuss.

          • Old Soul

            There is no way I’m posting my email on a public forum. I suggest we meet and work out the details. You can hate anything you want Rob, it’s none of my business. But “sticks”?
            Let’s meet up and burn one and then decide where to go from there. It’s convivial and fun,
            like sampling pies at a giant pumpkin competition.

          • rob

            I agree I’m totally down with that. I suggest we hook up on another forum (we can both register at whatever forum) then we can pm each other and peace this out.

  • Mike Johnson

    Great work Johnny! We all owe you. I wish there was a list of OR legislators that showed which of them are anti weed. I could have used such a list last election in Columbia County. There the county commissioners implemented an ’emergency’ ban on all new outdoor grows. They were just elected. I had no idea that they had the power to override state laws. I think that they just committed political suicide. I’m pretty sure that any political canidate in the future will have a hard time getting elected if they are anti-cannabis. This will probably apply all the way up to the presidential election. More people like pot than politicians!

  • Bongstar420

    Dispensaries are turning vendors away at this moment. There are no shortages of sellers.

    Have fun not getting checked on..I am

    • Mike Johnson

      I think you are just sour grapes on mmj, because of what happened to you. Since you can’t get a mmj card you have to grow illegally. This puts mmj in direct competition with you. I grew that way for years. Then some cancer patients asked me to grow for them. I can tell you that my stress level went way down! I have been legal ever since. The changes they want to make would make me illegal again. This is why many mmj folks are against the new laws. I am sorry about what happened to you it sucks, but you should still support mmj. One day you may be able to expunge your record.

  • We have way more government than we can afford.

    Every tax, every regulation comes with it an army of bureaucrats and behind that an army (with guns) of enforcers.

  • Mike Johnson

    There is a new senate bill. We are not safe yet. If at all.

  • Pacificcannabis

    New bill . New committee . They will not stop until all growers live out of city limits and have no contact with the outside world . This bill is so evil i cant even believe it. Senator burdick wants to tell me where i can and cant live just because of the medicine i take?!?!?!? This has gone way to far !!! Its time to speak up my friends! We must defend ourself from this onslaught of greed and misinformation. Find me on twitter facebook or instagram, or by email pacificcannabis@gmail.com

    I think we all deserve to have a voice yet this new committee wishes to vote through sb 964 so rapidly that due process is forgone

  • Mary Miller

    My ever on-going frustration of why we need FEDERAL changes, rather than STATE changes. We keep fighting this “do-se-do” with senators, and in states where “we the people” have spoken, only to have senators play never-ending bill writing hoping we’ll just get too exhausted and back down. I am so frustrated with the states like Washington, Oregon and a few others who’s only interest is in how to screw us patients. Yes, I will not continue to argue the forever ‘chestnut’ about big Pharma, we all know the lobbying problems, as well as “Beer wars”…..The bigger issue is: if we fail to change federal law, long long before our rights are simply “undone” with a new round of senators and so forth willing to write bills to wear us down?

  • MiCreeNi QuashMah

    you want to take away my pot … OKay I would exchange my freedom to grow use and manufacture marijuana for distribution FOR absolute LEGAL AND MORAL immunity from the physical action caused due to post traumatic stress syndrome. including and not limited by murder and grand theft…. I mean you can give millions to banks and you cannot seem to get the hell out of my garden and leave me alone?
    fuck it lets go to civil war and you just finish the god dam job you started a century ago .
    KILLING PEOPLE THAT DON”T BELIEVE THE WAY YOU DO
    we tell you and tell you and show you and you still refuse to believe go on then use synthetic drugs live a plastic existence and die and go to hell ……..but stop attempting to change our birth rights as human beings this medicine belongs to us and we intend to keep it even if it means CIVIL WAR so get a fucking grip and learn what it means to abide with the peoples vote. or be known as a subversive politician and end your political life.