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Date: May 6, 2014
Location: Portland, OR

Marijuana has become a hot topic in the northwest over the last few years. Oregon cities have been grappling with how to regulate medical marijuana dispensaries as well as those growers who supply medicine to patients. Meanwhile, Washington legalized recreational marijuana, but recently adopted stringent restrictions - including maps identifying production sites and imposing numeric and spacing limitations on licensed retail marijuana stores. A number of legalization measures are being considered by the Oregon legislature and those measures, as well as citizen initiatives, may appear on the Oregon ballot in November.

Is legalization a burgeoning new opportunity to save our underutilized industrial areas or is the popularity of dispensaries eroding our main street, downtown commercial cores? To what extent should we expect local government regulation, either in the manufacture or the consumption side? This meeting will examine the legal underpinnings of these questions, including:

  • Preemption and home rule authority;
  • Examples of local limitations on dispensaries - business vs. zoning requirements;
  • Planning for marijuana in Washington and why that structure may not work in Oregon; and
  • Current update on ballot measures and legislation regarding legalization


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