By Steve Elliott
One Oregon County is considering excluding marijuana from farm zones, leading to questions about how cannabis will be regulated under legalization and the state's land use system.
Since voters approved legalization under Measure 91 last November, Linn County officials have been bombarded with questions about where citizens can grow it, according to County Commissioner Roger Nyquist, reports Mateusz Perkowski at the Capital Press.
"We're even seeing real estate ads advertising properties as turnkey ready for marijuana production," Nyquist said.
County commissioners are considering limiting commercial marijuana production to light industrial and commercial zones, according to Nyquist, who said the commissioners were "concerned" about "problems resulting from growing marijuana outdoors near homes."
"There are security issues if you have millions of dollars worth of crop sitting next to families," he said.
But marijuana proponents see the proposal as a try to circumvent Measure 91. Using zoning rules to create a "functional ban" on marijuana dispensaries would be preempted by legalization, according to attorney Leland Berger, who advises cannabis businesses.
"I am starting to see municipalities who are bigoted against cannabis utilize land use and zoning laws to avoid state preemption," Berger said.