cannabis emergency
cannabis emergency

Marijuana State of Emergency - Oregon County Declares State of Emergency over Illegal Pot Grows

We have a marijuana emergency in Oregon and state officials need help!

Posted by:
jsp1073 on Wednesday Oct 20, 2021

Oregon County Declares State of Emergency over Ilegal Pot Grows

oregon panic attacks

Jackson county, based in the southwest area of Oregon, has cried out for help from state officials.

On Wednesday 14 October 2021, the county sent out a memo to the state government saying that it could no longer contain the high increase in the size and number of illegal cannabis farming operations in its community.

This county has appeared in the news several times in the past months for the same reason— the high number of illegal cannabis plot raids carried out.

The county's officials seem to have had enough of it all, as they called on Governor Kate Brown and well-meaning lawmakers to dispatch national guards to the area for security purposes...


Oregon's Legal Cannabis Industry

Six years ago, Oregon became one of the first states to approve the recreational use of cannabis, as well as its sales. Since then, the industry has flourished because it is widely accessible to all.

Small and large-scale business owners all have a stake in the industry and the licensing process is almost as smooth as getting a liquor store license.

The cannabis control council of the state monitors the industry with easy-to-understand regulations.

Entrepreneurs who are interested in joining the cannabis industry do not go through lengthy applications, nor do they have to fight for limited licenses. To cut the long story short, Oregon can easily claim to have the most accessible cannabis industry with its business-friendly regulations.

Despite all these, it is quite disappointing that some have refused to join the legal industry, but prefer to keep on growing cannabis illegally.

Black market sellers are emboldened by the day, and despite the countless raids that have been carried out to shut down these businesses, they still insist on setting up their illegal grows in no time.

Plenty of black market sellers and growers insist on bootlegging the state's cannabis market. The region most affected by these black market actors in the Southwest area of Oregon. Jackson County and Josephine county have become overwhelmed by these illegal grows. Their proximity to the emerald triangle is one of the reasons why black market cultivators find it easy to establish their illegal cannabis farms.


A Cry For Help

It takes a lot for a county's officials to accept defeat and call on the state government for assistance. The decision of these commissioners to submit a memo requesting assistance in battling illicit cannabis establishments is commendable, the cannabis industry is still quite delicate and matters like this ought to be handled with care.

With help from the state government, the police department and code enforcers will be assisted and relieved enough to carefully carry out their duties.

Jackson County is home to a popular city called Medford, and with the rate of illegal cannabis businesses in the county, you can also say it is home to over 1,000 illegal cannabis cultivation sites.

For a county that has less than 250,000 residents, this high amount of illegal growing operations is an imminent threat to the safety and health of the residents. With help from Governor Kate Brown, Jackson county will be a step closer to eradicating the problem of illegal grows.

In the memo, the county's commissioners explained that their law enforcement agencies do not have the needed resources and enough time to focus solely on addressing the worsening situation of illegal cannabis operations.

The letter requested that the Governor add 36 new staff to the community's police department. It also requests for state funds to at least double the present number of code enforcement staff in the county.


A state of Emergency

In 2014, when eligible voters chose to approve adult-use legislation in Oregon, no one would have believed that Oregon would be a landing spot for black market actors.

Released reports point that at least half of the registered cannabis farms in the state practice illegal techniques. For example, the approved THC limit for all plants grown is 0.3 percent, cannabis regulators have discovered that less than 50 percent of the farmers adhere to this limit.

Bootleg cannabis farmers pretend to be legal hemp farmers when they first set up shop in the state. The majority of these operations use Josephine and Jackson counties as a base for their illegal black market activities. They grow high THC amounts of marijuana, harvest, and sometimes process the buds, after which they sell within and outside the state. The illegal operations are money-grabbing schemes focused on earning higher profits while working around the payment of taxes to the state.

The official cannabis regulating bodies routinely dispatch officials to visit registered hemp farms in the state. Since these visits started, about a quarter of the registered hemp growers have denied the officials entry into their farm plots. The state also reported that the law enforcement agents most times find unlicensed firearms, like pistols, shotguns, etc, on most of the raided illegal cannabis farms.


Getting Rid Of Illegal Cannabis Operations

Illegal cannabis operations are becoming a persistent problem that seems to reoccur despite the clampdown by law enforcement agencies in several communities. It is even more predominant in states that have legalized the medical or recreational use of weed.

The workers in these illegal operations have been subjected to one of the worst working conditions despite the high profit being raked in by the owners of these establishments.

Combating these illegal cannabis grows throughout the west will be very challenging. However, the first thing for all parties involved will be for them to have a United front. These illegal growers tap into the state's resources, stealing water and lands while denying legal applicants of the much-needed resources. Their activities have played a huge role in the widespread megadrought that has been observed across the Western States.


Bottom Line

Jackson county has registered over 600 code violations perpetrated by illegal cannabis farmers in 2021 alone. Looking at data collated over the years, this figure is almost double the reported number of code violations throughout 2016.

Jackson County officials declaring a state of emergency over illegal cannabis grow operations was the right way to go!








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