Josephine County Considers Revamped Marijuana Ordinance

A new ordinance on the docket for the County Commissioners contains many of the hallmarks of a previous, 2017 ordinance that was overturned after pot advocates fought back.

Posted: Oct 3, 2018 4:23 PM
Updated: Oct 3, 2018 4:33 PM

GRANTS PASS, Ore. — A new proposed ordinance before the Josephine County Board of Commissioners shares many similarities with a previous ordinance passed in 2017 that attempted to rein in marijuana growers  before it was overturned in court.

The new ordinance, No. 2018-005 says in abstract that it would "prohibit the production, processing, wholesaling, retailing, and research of marijuana in rural residential zones."

Much like the previous ordinance, the new one would not attempt to restrict the growth of the four personal plants per residence allowed under state law. However, unlike the previous ordinance, the new one does not appear to be confined to plots of land that are five acres or less.

Perhaps softening the blow for marijuana farmers in Josephine County, the proposed ordinance does include a clause that appears to grandfather-in existing legal grow operations:

"Lawfully established Marijuana Production Sites in rural residential zones that existed prior to the effective date of Ordinance 2018-005 and authorized by state law as of that effective date may be eligible for a Determination of a Nonconforming Use," the document states.

Yet even that provision includes new conditions — a person regulated by the State of Oregon must "have an interest" in the property where the site is located, business hours must be limited to the hours of 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., those hours will be extended slightly during harvest time, and noise from any production activities must measure below 50 decibels during business hours.

Plants at any of these approved "Nonconforming" sites would also have to be at least 150 feet from a neighboring home. Properties that don't already follow this rule would need to make the necessary changes within two years of the ordinance's effective date.

The first reading of this ordinance is set for Wednesday, November 7.

What ultimately caused the previous ordinance aimed at marijuana sites to be overturned by the Land Use Board of Appeals earlier this year was an apparent failure to directly notify property owners (a requirement by law) that the ordinance was being considered. According to a statement from the Board of Commissioners sent to the media on Wednesday:

"The County will enclose notices to property owners with mailed tax statements in the coming weeks."

After Josephine County's previous ordinance was overturned, the County attempted to sue the state of Oregon in federal court. That lawsuit was dismissed by a federal magistrate judge in early September.

The ordinance draft may be downloaded or read in its entirety below.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 309841

Reported Deaths: 3569
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah50840642
Washington34683272
Marion32181388
Clackamas26315270
Lane23632246
Jackson20753255
Deschutes16401100
Umatilla12552125
Douglas10599185
Linn1030285
Josephine8536163
Yamhill737299
Klamath637891
Polk617770
Malheur475867
Benton454027
Coos406469
Columbia320237
Jefferson310446
Lincoln272829
Union266036
Wasco236739
Crook212137
Clatsop210225
Tillamook179623
Baker171920
Morrow166621
Curry166317
Hood River161635
Harney77115
Grant7538
Lake6608
Wallowa50111
Gilliam1364
Sherman1283
Wheeler651
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 4636268

Reported Deaths: 67966
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles144412725849
Riverside3575584802
San Diego3492274006
San Bernardino3468955501
Orange3135295354
Sacramento1498662070
Santa Clara1403871841
Fresno1356471889
Kern1343971515
Alameda1160681320
Ventura976231120
San Joaquin971621615
Contra Costa95595924
Stanislaus800341229
Tulare72812896
San Mateo52172607
San Francisco51808605
Monterey49445565
Solano44061312
Santa Barbara43065500
Sonoma39376376
Merced39279535
Placer36390364
Imperial34235755
Kings30038285
San Luis Obispo28273313
Madera21672258
Butte21205230
Shasta20647276
Santa Cruz20134211
Yolo19118239
Marin17080242
El Dorado15964127
Sutter13055153
Napa1224695
Yuba923461
Nevada845685
Humboldt826284
Tehama821184
San Benito708567
Mendocino681971
Lassen636827
Tuolumne612593
Lake601087
Amador489759
Glenn396430
Siskiyou388841
Calaveras339366
Del Norte334234
Colusa290718
Inyo166239
Mono14935
Plumas12336
Mariposa96712
Trinity71910
Modoc6278
Sierra1980
Unassigned1180
Alpine1000
Out of CA00
Medford
Clear
50° wxIcon
Hi: 77° Lo: 41°
Feels Like: 50°
Brookings
Partly Cloudy
64° wxIcon
Hi: 78° Lo: 49°
Feels Like: 64°
Crater Lake
Partly Cloudy
50° wxIcon
Hi: 61° Lo: 26°
Feels Like: 50°
Grants Pass
Partly Cloudy
50° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 43°
Feels Like: 50°
Klamath Falls
Clear
46° wxIcon
Hi: 67° Lo: 35°
Feels Like: 44°
Dry and mild Monday with good air quality
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events