New regulations have been proposed by Oregon legislators to limit existing pot growers in most areas to 96 plants and 24 plants in residential areas, and medical marijuana patients and growers are none too happy.
Lawmakers argue that the limitations will help curb the alleged cannabis black market. According to the Oregonian, Sen. Ginny Burdick said, "It's no secret that medical marijuana is appearing all over the U.S. in the illegal market."
Patients, growers, and cannabis lobbyists fear, however, that these new restrictions will hugely crimp the supply chain for currently legal medical marijuana, and lead to higher prices. While part of the provision aims to protect medical marijuana patients by making it harder for local governments to prohibit medical marijuana dispensaries, the concerns of the negative effects seem to weigh heavier on patients and growers.
Anthony Taylor of medical marijuana patient advocacy group Compassionate Oregon told the Oregonian, "It's really hard to get rid of a black market, and it's a tricky landscape because it puts so many patients at risk."
Members of the cannabis lobby and medical marijuana advocates are pushing back, urging citizens to write to legislators and call on them to make changes to the bill that would be less restrictive, and ultimately protect medical marijuana patients.