Josephine County Says No to Dispensaries

joco dispensariesGRANTS PASS, Ore – Josephine County leaders said the county charter prevents them from allowing medical marijuana dispensaries in the county. The finding comes less than a week before the state can begin issuing business licenses to those facilities.

According to the county charter, business licenses cannot be given to places that break local, state, and federal law. And under federal law, marijuana is illegal.

County commissioners said the charter makes it clear that a medical marijuana dispensary would be in violation, and said there’s nothing they can legally do right now to change that fact.

“It’s just not doable until that federal law would change or, I guess it could be presumed that the charter could change,” said Commissioner Keith Heck. “But that’s not a realistic option any time soon.

Last week, Grants Pass city leaders also said they will not allow the facilities to open, and used the same argument that their laws do not allow something to open if it violates federal law.

Also last week, the Oregon Senate passed a bill that allows cities to regulate where those dispensaries can open, like around schools and parks. That bill still needs to be voted on by the Oregon House.


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  1. jeff says:

    can the county commissioners,relate to the$ 700.000000 worth of tax and revenue to allow the stores to open ,do they have any idea whaqt that kind of money can do for the county could start with getting the mutts that run this town down the drain off of our public streets,get the meth heads out of town and put proper law enforcement in the field

  2. ellen says:

    Big mistake for Josephine County. Dispensaries would have given sick and terminally ill citizens here an alternative to dangerous prescription narcotics and the real drug problems here which are indeed meth and heroin. The income generated by legal State run dispensaries would give us a safer community as we could fund the Sheriffs dept. and relocate the increasing young homeless from downtown Grants Pass to the workforce.

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