06-22-2018  11:34 pm      •     
The Skanner Report
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4


AG Rosenblum Seeks Info from Oregonians

Oregon Attorney General seeks information on children separated from families at border ...

Community Forum: How Does Law Enforcement Interact With Vulnerable Populations?

Forum will focus on public safety and examine mental health and addiction issues ...

King County Council Recognizes Juneteenth

The Metropolitan King County Council recognizes a true 'freedom day' in the United States ...

Unite Oregon Hosts ‘Mourn Pray Love, and Take Action’ June 20

Community is invited to gather at Terry Schrunk Plaza at 6 p.m. on World Refugee Day ...

MRG Foundation Announces Spring 2018 Grantees

Recipients include Oregon DACA Coalition, Kúkátónón Children’s African Dance Troupe, Komemma Cultural Protection Association ...

Lawsuit seeks lawyer access to immigrants in prison

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — A rights group filed an emergency lawsuit in federal court Friday against top officials of U.S. immigration and homeland security departments, alleging they have unconstitutionally denied lawyers' access to immigrants in a prison in Oregon.Immigration and Customs...

Police: Oregon toddler dies after being left in hot car

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A toddler in Oregon died after being left alone in a hot car while her mother went to work as a family nurse practitioner, authorities said Friday.Nicole Engler, 38, of Roseburg told investigators she thought she had taken her 21-month-old daughter Remington to daycare...

Lawsuits challenge efforts to push abstinence-only on teens

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Several affiliates of Planned Parenthood sued the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on Friday over its efforts to impose an abstinence-only focus on its Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program that has served more than 1 million young people.The lawsuits were filed...

Man, 5-year-old boy hurt in electrical accident in Everett

EVERETT, Wash. (AP) — Authorities say a man and his 5-year-old son were hospitalized after a mechanical lift they were using in Everett touched power lines.The Daily Herald reports the accident happened Friday afternoon in an alley downtown.It wasn't known why the pair was using a mechanical...


How Washington’s 'School Achievement Index' Became School Spending Index

New assessment categorizes schools not by quality of education, but level of funding officials believe they should receive ...

Black Mamas Are Dying. We Can Stop It.

Congresswoman Robin Kelly plans to improve access to culturally-competent care with the MOMMA Act ...

Hey, Elected Officials: No More Chicken Dinners...We Need Policy

Jeffrey Boney says many elected officials who visit the Black community only during the election season get a pass for doing nothing ...

Juneteenth: Freedom's Promise Still Denied

Juneteenth is a celebration of the de facto end of slavery, but the proliferation of incarceration keeps liberation unfulfilled ...


Racist tropes in Ramadan TV satires anger black Arabs

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — In an attempt to capitalize on what's become a ratings bonanza for Arabic satellite channels during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, two comedies struck the wrong chord with audiences when their lead actors appeared in blackface, a form of makeup that...

AP Source: J. Cole to perform at BET Awards

NEW YORK (AP) — J. Cole is set to perform at Sunday's BET Awards.A person familiar with the awards show, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the person was not allowed to discuss the plans publicly, tells The Associated Press on Friday that the rapper will perform at the...

The Latest: Germany, Mexico, Belgium headline Saturday games

MOSCOW (AP) — The Latest on Friday at the World Cup (all times local):1:13 a.m.Will Germany follow Brazil's lead in righting the ship after a rocky World Cup start, or will the defending champ find itself keeping company with Argentina, needing help if it hopes to advance?The World Cup could...


So much TV, so little summer: Amy Adams, Kevin Hart, Dr. Pol

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The fall television season is months away but that's no reason to stare moodily at a blank screen. In this era of peak TV, there are so many outlets and shows clamoring for your summertime attention that it can be as daunting as choosing between a mojito and a frozen...

Honduran girl in symbolic photo not separated from mother

NEW YORK (AP) — A crying Honduran girl depicted in a widely-seen photograph that became a symbol for many of President Donald Trump's immigration policies was not actually separated from her mother, U.S. government officials said on Friday.Time magazine used an image of the girl, by Getty...

AP Source: J. Cole to perform at BET Awards

NEW YORK (AP) — J. Cole is set to perform at Sunday's BET Awards.A person familiar with the awards show, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the person was not allowed to discuss the plans publicly, tells The Associated Press on Friday that the rapper will perform at the...


Beyond World Cup: Advocates call attention to Russian abuses

MOSCOW (AP) — Wrapped in national flags, jubilant fans dance at midnight in the streets of Moscow, smiling,...

Trump advises GOP: Quit wasting time on immigration.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Just when House Republicans needed Donald Trump's backing the most — on their big...

Racist tropes in Ramadan TV satires anger black Arabs

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — In an attempt to capitalize on what's become a ratings bonanza for...

OPEC agrees to pump more oil but crude prices jump anyway

VIENNA (AP) — The countries of the OPEC cartel agreed on Friday to pump 1 million barrels more crude oil...

US officials say girl on Time cover isn't separated from mom

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. Border Patrol officials said Friday that a girl who is pictured on the cover of this...

Many Brazilians look to military amid anger at politicians

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Furious at corrupt politicians and fearful of deteriorating security, many Brazilians...

Donovan M. Smith Of The Skanner News

Medical marijuana user Ezekiel Muses checks out a jar of medical marijuana that he uses for back pain, at the CANNA CARE medical marijuana dispensary in Sacramento, Calif., Tuesday, Sept. 21, 2010. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)


Washington may be known as the ‘Emerald State’ but soon, here in the Beaver State things are going to be getting a lot greener too.

That’s because, come July 1, Measure 91 -- the law legalizing recreational marijuana usage in Oregon for persons 21 and up -- goes into effect.

While the date is fast approaching, questions around how pot will be regulated rest on the shoulders of the Oregon Liquor Control Commission.

Another issue is: How will Black Oregonians figure into this new industry, which is expected to generate tens of millions of dollars in revenue?

“We need African Americans in these industries,” says Michael Harper, one of three Black members of the OLCC Board of Commissioners.

Navigating new rules

Those with a ‘green thumb’ and an entrepreneurial spirit will have to wait until Jan. 4, 2016, to apply to get their hand in the industry

The laws around cannabis possession and consumption kick in first; for those who would open a business, the licensing process starts later.

In other words, July 1 marks the beginning of legal cannabis possession and usage. The law allows adults 21 and over to possesseight ounces of marijuana and grow no more than four marijuana plants in their households (although for public possession, you are limited to one ounce).

Those with a “green thumb” and an entrepreneurial spirit will have to wait until Jan. 4, 2016, to apply to get their hand in the industry. 

As it stands now there are four different licenses to be obtained for anyone going into the business of marijuana: They are for growers, processors, wholesalers and retailers.

OLCC says the number of licensing opportunities may expand as they smooth out details of regulation over the next year.

(It should be noted that the new laws do not affect the 16-year-old Oregon Medical Marijuana Plan.)

Disappointing public participation

Part of the OLCC’s process of figuring out the rules has involved a series of public listening sessions they held across the state; the public hearings concluded in Portland this month.

Commissioner Harper, who is African American, says the Black community’s lack of turnout was disheartening.

Tom Towslee, spokesperson for the OLCC, says that assuring minorities and women get a fair shake in obtaining licenses is something they will “definitely be looking at.”

“That will be part of the commission’s authority and responsibility when it gets around to adopting the rules to implement the law,” Towslee says.

Oregon is largely using Colorado as a model for formulating the new rules because the Boulder State also had a medical marijuana program, he said, and the diversity of licenses awarded will depend on how diverse the applicant pool is.

Towslee says he’s seen an array of projections on how much sales will generate for the state, ranging from $5 million to $44 million.

But he cautions the numbers are only speculation and hard facts on how Oregon’s faring won’t be available probably until sometime in 2017.

“We are still writing the rules for implementing Measure 91,” he said this week, “but I can tell you that the commissioners are committed to giving everyone an opportunity to engage in the marijuana economy.”

Starting a new industry

Washington had a messy retail rollout last year, with each of the 24 licensed shops running out of supply within the first two weeks last summer.

Since then the number of licensed shops has grown to 99, with state officials projecting revenue at $694 million through the middle of 2019.

Ironically, experts say that despite the new market opening up, a lot of longtime are likely to stick with the sources they used originally to get their pot.

According to an OLCC study, 91 percent of weed purchasers got their bud from family and friends.

That so-called “black market” is the subject of new legislation put forth by state Rep. Lew Frederick. House Bill 3372 would allow for sentence reductions for marijuana-related crimes (like distribution and use) and in lighter cases, record expungement.

According to the ACLU, 52 percent of all statewide drug arrests in 2010 were linked to marijuana. Though research shows cannabis usage is fairly even amongst Blacks and whites, Blacks are four times as likely to be arrested for possession. 

 “A lot of people are going to be making a lot of money for the same activities that other people are still incarcerated for, or living with a lifetime of consequences," Frederick says.

His comments mirror those of acclaimed civil rights advocate and writer Michelle Alexander, who penned the New York Times best-selling book, “The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindess.”

“Here are white men poised to run big marijuana businesses, dreaming of cashing in big—big money, big businesses selling weed,” Alexander said last year in an interview with asha bandele of the Drug Policy Alliance.“After 40 years of impoverished Black kids getting prison time for selling weed, and their families and futures destroyed -- now, white men are planning to get rich doing precisely the same thing?”

For more information on Measure 91 and the upcoming rulemaking around it, visit www.Oregon.gov/marijuana

Carpentry Professionals
Portland Community Policing

Photo Gallery

Photos and slide shows of local events

Lents International Farmers Market
The Skanner Report

The Skanner Foundation Scholarships