Here’s the update  received 1 June 2019

Oregon Legislative Update and Summary

There are just 31 days left in the legislative session. We have seen a lot of political maneuvering, tricks, and fighting between the parties leading to legislative delays that put some of our most important bills at risk. The good news is that SB-365 has passed both chambers and is heading to the Governor’s desk. And SB-420 & SB-975 are expected to pass out of the House early next week.

Check out the infographic below (updated 5/30) for an overview of all the bills that we are tracking to make it easier to see where each bill is.

Before we jump into policy I must sadly report that Sen. Jackie Winters, first African-American Republican elected to Oregon legislature, passed away this week at 82.

BILL Updates:

I am going into a bit more detail than normal on a couple of bills because they have a significant impact on the industry.

Please note the following analysis is strictly informational and not indicative of ORCA’s position unless explicitly stated. Additionally the analysis only covers the most important aspects of the bills, for detailed specifics please follow up with Jesse Bontecou directly.

SB 582 – Legal Cannabis Export Bill

This bill gives the Governor the authority to export cannabis as soon as the feds indicate that export will be tolerated. SB 582 was passed by the Senate and sent to the House Rules Committee for procedural purposes.  We have been told that this bill is a priority and it will get a vote in the House before the end of the legislative session. At this point we are very confident that this bill will get to the Governor’s desk. This is ORCA’s top priority right now.

SB 218 – Cap on Production Licenses

SB 218 broadly speaking gives the OLCC the authority to cap the number of production licenses it issues based off of market supply analysis. This bill has passed out of both the House and Senate. It has a couple of procedural hurdles left but it almost certainly will make it to the Governor’s desk. 

In recent weeks there have been some key changes to this bill that we wanted to make you aware of:

  1. The OLCC’s authority to cap production licenses lasts until 2022.
  2. This bill does not apply to existing licenses, including renewals, or for changes of location, or changes of ownership for existing businesses.
  3. The OLCC must process production applications submitted before June 15th 2018. However, and this is very important: applicants must have their land use compatibility statements submitted by the 21st day after the Governor signs the bill. If they are not in by that point the application becomes inactive. 
  4. You will no longer be able to change the location on an application or 51% of ownership for outstanding applications submitted before 6/15/18. 

SB 2098 – Cannabis Omnibus Bill

This bill is fairly long and addresses numerous aspects of both the medical and recreational market.  It has has passed out of both the House and Senate but for procedural reasons needs to be voted on by both chambers one more time before it can go to the Governor.  We expect this bill to become law. I have highlight some of the bigger effects below and noted where to find the relevant text in the bill. I strongly suggest that everyone read points 5 and 6

  1. Directs the OLCC to setup an advisory committee to help develop and maintain standards for testing cannabis and cannabis items. See Section 1.(1) on page 1.
  2. Authorizes the OLCC to establish pilot programs to expand access to medical cannabis. See Section 5.(2)(g) on page 5.
  3. Defines “kief” and allows producers to produce and transfer “kief”.  See Section 6.(3)(a) on page 6.
  4. Allows certified retailers to sell and deliver medical cannabis to medical cardholders who are at least 18 years of age. See Section 12 on page 9.
  5. Directs the OLCC to revoke marijuana retailer licenses if a retailer fails to pay or file their returns twice in any consecutive four quarters. See Section 14.(2) on Page 10.
  6. Increases the maximum civil penalty for licensees from $5,000 to $10,000 per violation. See Section 15 on page 10.

Hopefully the faces and skulls are self-explanatory for our purposes.

[Download the Whole Document]

[OLIS is the Oregon Legislative Information System is extremely helpful for tracking bills, and pulling up additional information that may be of interest to you.  Our staff uses it all the time – and you should, too!]

GENERAL FEEDBACK: If you can, please take a moment and let Jesse Bontecou know what you think, what’s missing, and how you can help.

OLCC licensing news:

As of May. 30th Oregon has 2165 Active Licenses, a net increase of 12 licenses since our last Newsletter. The new licenses break down to 5 processors, 3 retailers, 5 wholesalers, and 1 less producer. 

Since July 18th of last year when started tracking this data Oregon has added 198 Licenses (about 18 a month). The new licenses break down to 44 processors, 65 retailers, 29 wholesalers, and 60 producers.