[ Editor’s Note: This article has been updated; House Bill 3460 now heads back to the House of Representatives for amendment approval by the Senate, where, once passed, it will be sent to the governor for final consideration. ]
Oregon’s full Senate has just approved a measure – already approved by the state’s House of Representatives – which legalizes medical cannabis dispensaries in the state. The bill now heads back to the House for approval on amendments made by the Senate. Once passed, the measure will be sent to the governor for final consideration; he’s expected to sign it into law.
Under the proposal (House Bill 3460), state-licensed dispensaries which follow certain guidelines – such as testing for molds and pesticides – will be explicitly legal, finally giving the thousands of patients in the state safe access to their medicine. Roughly 200 dispensaries are expected to open under the new law.
The passage of this proposal comes just days after the state’s legislature voted to approve a couple measures which significantly reduce the penalties associated with the possession (and even manufacturing) of cannabis, including making the possession of up to an ounce a civil infraction rather than a misdemeanor. Oregon’s Legislature has also voted recently to add post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) to the list of qualifying medical cannabis conditions – the governor has signed each of these measures into law.
[ Update: Oregon’s House of Representatives has given the measure final approval – it now heads to the governor, who’s expected to sign the proposal into law. ]