Tigard planners focus on marijuana shops – Portland Tribune
Plan calls for when, where and how dispensaries can sell weed in Tigard.
Tigard leaders are poised to decide the fate of marijuana dispensaries in the city at a Planning Commission meeting Monday night.
Tigard has mulled how to treat legal weed for months. Last year, the Legislature approved plans for medical marijuana dispensaries to open beginning this year. Add to that the recent passage of Measure 91, which legalizes recreational use of the drug in Oregon beginning in 2016, and cities have been forced to come up with standards for medical and recreational dispensaries.
At issue is where dispensaries will be allowed to set up. Under Measure 91, the city cant stop dispensaries from opening within its borders, unless it holds a public vote to ban them. But cities are allowed to set up restrictions on marijuana businesses, such as restricting hours of operation and where they can be located.
The city’s Planning Commission discusses the issue at 7 p.m. Jan. 12 at Tigard’s Town Hall, 13125 S.W. Hall Blvd. The discussion focuses on a development code amendment allowing marijuana dispensaries. The city is proposing two options to the commission, one follows existing state regulations, the other is much stricter code, which would keep dispensaries from opening within 1,000 feet of a school and 500 feet of residential homes, parks and recreation zones, such as libraries.
Tigard imposed a moratorium last year on any marijuana dispensaries opening in the city until May 2015. Councilors said the prohibition was only temporary while it got its tax structure and zoning requirements in line before any businesses open.
Medical marijuana dispensaries can apply for a business license as soon as the moratorium is lifted, though recreational retailers wont be able to open until Measure 91 goes into effect in July.
John Floyd, a planner with the city, said that dispensaries are already lining up to open in Tigard.
I have spoken to quite a few people who are interested in opening up in Tigard, Floyd told The Times last November. It appears that the market interest is to open retail facilities in the city.
Regulations for hours, locations, odors
If approved, the city would essentially limit dispensaries from opening except in a few small areas of the city, including a few select storefronts in downtown Tigard, a large swath of the Tigard Triangle between Pacific Highway and Highway 217, along 72nd Avenue and in Metzger, near Washington Square.
Under the proposed rules, dispensaries in Tigard would be open only between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m., and dispensaries would not be allowed within 500 feet of any residential zones, parks or libraries, and within 1,000 feet of elementary schools.
If approved, the restrictions would impact any business where marijuana is produced, such as indoor grow facilities, as well as dispensaries or so-called cannabis cafés, where the drug is consumed.
The proposed rules also require businesses to keep security lighting, bans drive-through dispensaries and places restrictions on odor.
The proposed development shall confine all marijuana odors and other objectionable odors to levels undetectable at the property line, city staff wrote in its proposal.
The city has similar restrictions in place for other adult businesses.
Under Tigard code, adult entertainment shops, such as Fantasy Video near Interstate 5, cannot be within 500 feet of schools or other land uses that may be negatively impacted by adult entertainments.
Dispensaries have opened in Tigard before. In 2010, a group known as The Human Collective opened near Interstate 5. The shop was seen by many as a poster child for how medical marijuana shops could be set up, but was raided by Washington County Sheriff’s Office in 2012.
The shop has since re-opened across Interstate 5 in Multnomah County.