July 1st, 2010 5:33 pm | by Sarah Jacoby News | Posted In: CLEAN UP, Cops and Courts

Medical Marijuana Initiative Update

Friday, July 2, is the deadline for supporters of initiatives in Oregon to turn in their last batches of signatures in hopes of making the November ballot.

And proponents of reforming Oregon's medical marijuana laws with Initiative 28 said today they are confident they will turn in enough valid signatures by tomorrow's 5 pm deadline to qualify for the ballot. The Coalition for Patients' Rights, working with the Voter Power Foundation, says state elections officials told them on June 18 that about two-thirds of their first batch of signatures were valid.

The 74,537 valid signatures left supporters needing 8,232 more valid signatures to qualify for the ballot. And the chief petitioners say that tomorrow they will turn in more than 16,000 additional signatures — about twice as many as they need for the initiative to be a go for the ballot.

Initiative 28 would create the Oregon Regulated Medical Marijuana Supply System, which would be completely self-funded by licensing fees and taxes on dispensers and produces.

As part of the proposed system, licensed nonprofit dispensaries would get their medical marijuana from licensed producers who would then sell it to registered patients. Current laws require patients to grow their own medical marijuana or to hire a grower to do it for them, but I-28 would let them buy it from the dispensaries and make their lives that much easier.
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