Call to Action: Stop Ginny Burdick’s Senate Bill 964

   

Senate Bill 964 will harm many Oregon medical marijuana patients and push more people into the black market. Additionally, the bill has many holes and unintended consequences (of course, this can happen when you pass a bill without any public comment).

We have managed to delay this harmful bill and it took extraordinary measures by Senator Ginny Burdick to pass the bill out of committee, but it will soon move to the Senate floor. A vote could happen this week, as early as Wednesday, the 27th. We need people to make their voices heard once again.

Ginny Burdick isn’t representing her constituents, has gone against patients, defamed the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program (OMMP) and should go down as the next “Dwight Holton” Democrat defeated because of her attacks on the OMMP.

Republicans support the bill because it allows cities and counties to ban medical marijuana dispensaries and it will be hard for Democratic senators to go against Senate President Pro Tempore Ginny Burdick. But we can still defeat this harmful bill by contacting key Oregon Senators and House members.

Call to Action #1:

Call some key Senate Democrats and urge them to vote “NO” on Senate Bill 964 as the bill allows cities and counties to ban medical marijuana dispensaries without a vote of the people, decreases the number of patient gardens allowed at grow sites and redefines mature marijuana plants to include drying plants (even branches!). Additionally, the additional fees, inspections and reporting requirements that growers must endure will push many into the black market. If you are a constituent, please let them know.

Senator Peter Courtney at 503-986-1600: As Senate President, Peter Courtney created the Senate-only committee that passed out Senate Bill 964. The creation of the special committee was a divisive maneuver that really insulted three great House Democrats who stood up for patients and the will of the voters. Let Senator Courtney, who represents the Salem area, know that you oppose Senate Bill 964 as it is a divisive bill that hurts vulnerable patients and goes against the will of the voters.

Senator Ginny Burdick at 503-986-1718: Representing a Portland-area district that overwhelmingly supports Measure 91 and the OMMP, Senator Burdick is clearly NOT representing her constituents. While we won’t change her vote, it is good that Ms. Burdick hears from Oregonians that she is going against the will of the voters and that Senate Bill 964 will hurt many patients.

Senator Alan Bates at 503-986-1703: His district includes Medford, Talent, Phoenix, Jacksonville, Applegate, Ruch and Ashland. He needs to know that local bans hurt patients and communities and that many of his constituents support the rights of patients and growers.

Senate Majority Leader Diane Rosenbaum at 503-986-1700: Her Portland district overwhelmingly supported Measure 91 and the local ban provision in Senate Bill 964 goes against Measure 91. She is the highest-ranking Democratic Senator that we may get to oppose this harmful bill.

Call to Action #2:

Call some key House members and let them know that they should support Representatives Peter Buckley, Ann Lininger and Ken Helm in opposing Senate Bill 964.If you are a constituent, please let them know.  Democrats should join their colleagues in supporting vulnerable patients and the will of the voters.

House Speaker Tina Kotek at 503-986-1200: Speaker Kotek’s Portland district supported Measure 91 with over 78% of the vote. Senate Bill 964 goes against the will of the voters and a large number of her constituents. She needs to oppose Senate Bill 964 and support the efforts of Representatives Buckley, Helm and Lininger.

Representative Paul Holvey at 503-986-1408: Representative Holvey’s Eugene district supported Measure 91 with nearly 68% of the vote. He needs to oppose Senate Bill 964 and support the efforts of Representatives Buckley, Helm and Lininger.

Representative Nancy Nathanson at 503-986-1413: Representative Nathanson’s Eugene district supported Measure 91 with over 61% of the vote. She needs to oppose Senate Bill 964 and support the efforts of Representatives Buckley, Helm and Lininger.

Okay, that’s it for now. We have done a lot to protect patients and the OMMP this legislative session. Senate Bill 964 is a big threat to a lot of people, so we must continue the fight. Check back with Marijuana Politics early and often as we update the situation and announce future calls to action.

Alex Rogers

Alex Rogers is co-owner of Marijuana Politics. He is an experienced cannabis law reform advocate, getting his start in the 1990s under the tutelage of legendary activist Jack Herer. Alex is also CEO of Ashland Alternative Health, and Northwest Alternative Health, medical cannabis clinics that help register patients with the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program. Additionally, Alex is the executive producer of industry business conferences that work to further professionalize and mainstream the cannabis and hemp industries. He started the Oregon Medical Marijuana Business Conference (OMMBC), the first medical marijuana business conference of its kind in Oregon. Following the success of the OMMBC, Rogers started organizing the first International Cannabis Business Conference (ICBC), a unique event bringing in activists and entrepreneurs with valuable experience from across the globe.