Oregon Cannabis Lounge Bill Advances

An Oregon state Senate committee will consider Senate Bill 639, a bill to allow for cannabis consumption lounges, on Feb. 28, as the bill makes its way through legislation. Oregon residents who rent often cannot smoke cannabis, even inside their own homes.

CBS affiliate KVAL in Eugene, Oregon reports that SB-639 would provide regulations that would be handled by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission. It would allow for licensed cannabis lounges and the consumption and sale of cannabis at temporary events. It is sponsored by Sen. Floyd Prozanski, Sen. Lew Frederick and Sen. Elizabeth Steiner Hayward.

“Consumption of cannabis in public is illegal, yet tourists and patients and adults that rent rather than own their homes have the right to purchase and possess cannabis but no space they can legally consume,” Michael Bachara with Oregon NORML wrote. “In the end, social consumption lounges would also attract more tourists to Oregon and allow for promotion of our local craft producers.”

Both cannabis lounges and temporary events cannot be located within 1,000 feet of schools. The bill would allow for smoking as well as “aerosolizing or vaporizing” cannabis or cannabis products inside of lounge establishments. The bill would also allow for cannabis producers to allow tours of their farms.

Angela Bacca suffers from Crohn’s disease and is an avid medical cannabis activist in the area. “I am not technically allowed to consume at home nor am I allowed to consume it on a public street corner,” she stated. “Unfortunately the benefits of legalization have gone mostly to business and not towards social justice and consumer rights. I have the right to buy it, pay tax on it and possess it (when I am not home of course) but I basically don’t have the right to consume anywhere.”

The Senate Committee On Business and General Government is scheduled to hold a hearing on the bill on Thursday, Feb. 28.

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