By Derrick Stanley
Madeline Martinez, proprietor of the World Famous Cannabis Cafe in Portland, announced Monday that she will close the establishment next week following another warning from public health officials claiming the business disregards new indoor air rules.
Martinez, a veteran marijuana legalization advocate and Cafe owner, announced that the closure will take place after the March 7 final Stoner Bingo Session.
A surprise inspection last week led to the decision. Erik Vidstrand, a Multnomah County tobacco program specialist pointed out ashtrays and remnants of smoked joints and reminded her that smoking is not allowed in the cafe under state law, Martinez said.
"I told them they are infringing on my constitutional rights," said Martinez, whose patrons must bring their own marijuana to consume at the club. "I have a right to gather peacefully. That is what I am exercising. They are very concerned about the toxicity (of cannabis smoke), which is ridiculous."
The Oregon Indoor Clean Air Act originally only targeted tobacco, but added vaporizer pens, e-cigarettes, and marijuana last year.
Cigar bars and smoke shops still allow tobacco consumption under the indoor clean air act, if certified by the state.
Among other detractors of the clean air act, many medical marijuana patients who live in housing with no-smoking rules feel this is unfair. Cannabis clubs have often been their legal alternative for a place in which to medicate.