What a difference a state makes. Last week cannabis industry watchers had their eyes on Idaho, where news broke about the Idaho State Police arresting a truck driver for transporting hemp across the border.
That same week the state of Oregon held a hearing on a Senate bill that would eliminate the prohibition on interstate transportation of marijuana – and create the possibility for the state to export the product to other states where the product is legal.
The twin goals of the legislation are to address rampant oversupply in Oregon’s pot marketplace and pave the way for immediate adoption of interstate commerce once marijuana becomes legal at the federal level.
It took more than a year after Oregon legalized pot to create a regulatory structure necessary to actually get the market off the ground, said Donald Morse, a Portland-based consultant for the cannabis industry. Advocates don’t want to be mired in the same kind of bureaucracy once pot becomes legal nationwide.
“That’s what the Senate bill is all about,” Morse said. “It allow rules and regulations to be written, so that, when they have the federal government’s blessing, they can move at the blink of the eye. It allows us to be proactive.”
Many advocates think federal legalization of marijuana could come as soon as 2020, fueled by a Democrat-controlled House of Representatives and the recent legalization of hemp under the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018.
Creating an export market for Oregon-grown pot would address another big problem, one that few anticipated in the months leading up to legalization in this state – there is way too much