Marijuana Dispensary Initiative Likely On Oregon Ballot


Graphic: Oregon Green Free

​An initiative to legalize medical marijuana dispensaries appears headed for the November ballot in Oregon.

Preliminary figures show that Initiative 28, the campaign for a medical marijuana supply system in Oregon, gathered more than 115,000 signatures through May, reports Jessica Van Berkel at The Oregonian.
Supporters of Initiative 28 say the measure is needed to ensure that patients have safe and legal supply of medical marijuana.
They argue that the licensing fees imposed under the measure would generate millions of dollars in additional revenue for the state.
Polling shows that the initiative is supported by 59 percent of Oregon voters, according to the Coalition for Patients Rights 2010.
The initiative, known as The Oregon Regulated Medical Marijuana Supply System [complete text: PDF], needs 82,769 verified names of registered voters to make the ballot.

The preliminary totals only show signatures gathered by petitioners through May. The campaign will continue to gather signatures until the July 2 deadline to give them a cushion for names that have to be thrown out.
This year’s new method of monthly signature turn-ins gives campaigns and the secretary of state’s office a better idea of how campaigns are doing, according to secretary of state spokesman Logan Egbert.
The new law allows the office more time to process incoming signatures instead of having one big push after the deadline, Egbert said.
Initiatives which have gathered enough verified signatures to make the ballot will be announced by the secretary of state on August 30.
Measure 33 in 2004 sought to extend Oregon’s 1998 Medical Marijuana Act by mandating dispensaries, but it was rejected by 57 percent of state voters.