Pubdate: Tue, 19 Jan 2010
Source: Mail Tribune, The (Medford, OR)
Copyright: 2010 The Mail Tribune
Author: Damian Mann
Bookmark: (Cannabis - Medicinal)


Creating an ordinance to deal with objectionable odors  from legal
marijuana gardens may be a pipe dream  because of potential conflicts
with state and federal  laws, Jackson County officials say.

County Commissioner C.W. Smith said an analysis by  county staff
indicated too many legal problems could  arise in creating local
regulations to deal with smells  or traffic generated by medical
marijuana growing  operations.

"There does not seem to be an appropriate legal  approach to address
the issue at the county level," he  said.

Commissioners will review the county staff's analysis  of possible
regulations at 9 a.m. today at the Jackson  County Courthouse, 10 S.
Oakdale St., Medford.

Responding to complaints from some neighbors of medical  marijuana
gardens, the commissioners directed the  county's planning and legal
staffs to study crafting an  ordinance that would regulate traffic,
noise, smell,  visibility of the gardens and lights used for growing
and prohibit cultivation within 1,000 feet of a school.

With 2,418 medical marijuana cardholders, Jackson  County has the
third-highest number of patients using  the drug, behind only much
larger Multnomah and Lane  counties, according to the Oregon Medical
Marijuana  Program.

A grower can have up to six mature plants and 18 starts  and seedlings
per patient, for up to four patients.

Since the growing operations are not-for-profit, Smith  said the
county can't regulate them the way it can for  businesses. Smith said
he hopes state officials will  tighten up laws on medical marijuana

Backers of a new marijuana initiative that would create  more state
regulation of pot gardens are attempting  enough signatures to place
the initiative on the  November ballot.

Smith said the commissioners decided to look at the  issue because of
growing concern over the impacts of  these gardens in rural areas.

"We didn't mind looking at it," he said. 
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