Oregon lawmakers are kicking the pot cookie down the road.
The Oregon Legislature this week began tweaking the rules for legal recreational weed approved by voters in November. State officials have a tight deadline: Pot possession is legal starting July 1, and the state must license marijuana stores by Jan. 1, 2016.
But don't get too excited about purchasing pot-laced brownies, gummy bears and ice cream.
A bill introduced this week by four state representatives would allow the Oregon Liquor Control Commission to delay the licensing of recreational marijuana edible manufacturers until July 1, 2016. In effect, the bill could postpone the debut of "medibles" on retail shelves by at least six months.
The bill's backers are key players in Salem's pot policy—including Rep. Ann Lininger (D-Lake Oswego), who co-chairs the legislature's "Joint Committee" on marijuana, and Rep. Peter Buckley (D-Ashland), a longtime proponent of weed legalization.
The potency and labeling of marijuana edibles presents a thorny regulatory question for state officials—during last fall's campaign, opponents of legalization pointed to the boom of medibles in Colorado as a cautionary tale.
Colorado still doesn't have rules for medibles, despite high-profile incidents like a visiting college student leaping to his death from a hotel balcony after eating six times the recommended dosage of a pot cookie.
Last month, WW reported that lawmakers were mulling a ban on recreational medibles. The new bill, House Bill 2885, would temporarily accomplish that.
UPDATE, 5:05 pm: "It's a good idea to give the OLCC some breathing room," Lininger tells WW. She adds that the bill has support from Democrats and Republicans.
"It's a bipartisan team of people with a wide array of views on marijuana," Lininger says."It shows it's going to be possible to find some common ground on this issue. We all want to go slow, be careful and get this right on edibles."