March 12, 2012 --The city of Carlton, Oregon, held a hearing on a proposed city ordinance that would impose additional regulations on the growing of medical marijuana, an activity already regulated by the Oregon Medical Marijuana Act (OMMA). After concerns were voiced about both the legality of the ordinance and the burden it would place on Carlton’s medical marijuana patients, the issue was tabled until the next meeting in April. 

Legal concerns were brought to the attention of officials by ACLU of Oregon Legal Director Kevin Díaz, who sent a letter the Friday before the hearing to Carlton Mayor Kathie Oriet, as well as the city council, city manager, and city attorney.  In the letter, the ACLU warned that the proposed ordinance violates the Constitution and likely conflicts with state law and is pre-empted by the OMMA. The ordinance, the ACLU letter states, “would effectively strip registrants of their ability to obtain medical marijuana if they don’t submit to highly invasive regulations.” 

The ordinance will be discussed again at the next city council meeting on April 9th at Carlton’s City Hall at 7 p.m. The hearing is open to the public.