PHOENIX, Ore. – Less than two months remain until medical marijuana dispensaries become legal in Oregon. Now the issue of whether or not to support them is making its way to the city of Phoenix.
Like Medford, they’re looking at whether or not they’ll issue business licenses to dispensaries, an issue that came up in a packed city council meeting Monday night.
But the state’s final rules around dispensaries are still up in the air.
“It kind of puts the city in a tough place as we don’t have a lot of guidance,” said Phoenix Mayor Jeff Bellah.
Come March, the first wave of dispensaries will apply – one of which, The Greenery, is little more than a block from town hall. Right now The Greenery provides limited services to patients. They say they hope to send their application with the blessing of the city.
But as other cities like Medford and Tualatin pledge to keep dispensaries out, they say support doesn’t come easily.
“We’ve heard the mayor and councilors say that they don’t have any question that there are medical benefits to cannabis,” said The Greenery’s Executive Director Andrea Adams. “Little things like that, that seem small, are a huge deal.”
While members of city leadership say they can understand the reasons some support dispensaries, they still have to worry about what rules will be imposed by the state.
And they say there’s still a lot of public input to gather.
“We’re not in any hurry before March first to say, ‘okay, have a business license and go to it,’” said Bellah.
City leaders will be gathering more public input in a town hall meeting to be held as early as February. They’re also considering holding a public vote in May.