It’s official! The Oregon Secretary of State’s Office has confirmed that New Approach Oregon has submitted more than enough valid signatures to qualify their marijuana legalization initiative for the 2014 election in November. Here’s a breakdown of what legal marijuana will look like in Oregon:
Possession: One ounce of dried usable marijuana away from the home; eight ounces (a half-pound) of dried usable marijuana at the home; 16 ounces (a pound) of marijuana-infused edibles; 72 ounces (a six pack) of marijuana infused liquids; and one ounce of marijuana concentrate. Two times those amounts is a Class B violation. Four times those amounts is a Class B misdemeanor. Only over four times those amounts will remain a Class C felony.
Concentrates: While an adult may possess store-bought hash and hash oil, “no person may produce, process, keep or store homemade marijuana extracts.” Up to a quarter-ounce of homemade extracts will be a Class B misdemeanor and more than that will be a Class C felony.
Home Grow: Cultivation of four marijuana plants per household in places where they cannot be seen by normal unaided vision from a public place. The four plants may be mature or immature. Eight plants is a Class B misdemeanor; nine or more is a Class B felony.
Driving: No new driving impairment standards, such as Washington’s per se standard of five nanograms of active THC per milliliter of blood. However, a new penalty, “use of marijuana while driving,” is added to the law as a Class B traffic violation, and the state must examine the scientific evidence regarding marijuana impairment and driving in making any new standards in the future.
Commercial Licenses: Licensing for producer (grower), processor, wholesaler, and retailer. Application costs $250 and the license is $1,000 per year. Anyone, resident or not, may hold as many of any type of license; there is no “vertical integration” or “tied-house” requirements.
Bans/Moratoria: A city or county can ban marijuana licensees, but only through the initiative process and a vote by the people.
Taxes: A one-time tax at the producer level of $35 per ounce for flowers, $10 per ounce for leaves and $5 per immature marijuana plant. No sales or excise taxes at any other level.
Tax Distribution: 40 percent to the common school fund; 20 percent to mental health, alcoholism and drug services; 15 percent to state police; 10 percent to the cities in proportion to their population; 10 percent to the counties in proportion to their population; and five percent to the Oregon Health Authority for drug and alcohol abuse prevention. However, after July 1, 2017, that marijuana tax money for cities and counties is based on the number of licenses in the city or county, so if a city or county bans licensees, it doesn’t get its share of marijuana tax proceeds.
Advertising: Marijuana advertising may be restricted or banned by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission, which is in charge of enforcing the marijuana regulations.
Public Use: Banned.
Medical Marijuana: Unaffected.
"Radical" Russ Belville is the host of The Russ Belville Show.
Photo from wheresweed.com