If Oregon’s cannabis growers don’t clean up the practice, landlords will literally soon be paying the price, and migrant workers will be at risk of deportation. Oregon is an oasis for growing cannabis.according to Associated Pressthe state’s cannabis and alcohol regulator leader said Southern Oregon is like Bordeaux for marijuana.
But some people with less-than-ideal ethics risk ruining the land for everyone. The state faces a crisis of illegal growers paying large cash advances to lease or buy land. However, giving cannabis a bad name, it seems that it is grown only for profit, without considering other factors such as the land and the fate of the workers. Those producers leave the water table depleted, polluted and littered. Now the Oregon legislature is passing new legislation to curb such negative effects by holding landlords themselves directly accountable.
If the bill is passed, the use of groundwater and rivers will be stopped, and migrant workers tending plants will have their papers confiscated and subject to deportation. Associated Press report. And if landlords don’t pay cleanup costs, whether caused or not, governments will be allowed to make lien claims on property used for illegal cannabis.
So far, the bill has passed the Senate and House, and was signed into law by Speaker Dan Layfield on Wednesday despite protests from some Republicans. Republican Senator Dennis Linthicum said on the Senate floor, “This is just an attack on property rights here in Oregon.”
If all goes according to plan, Oregon’s Democratic Gov. Tina Kotek is set to sign the bill into law next week. “The governor supports cracking down on the illegal marijuana business that is rampant in southern Oregon,” said Elizabeth Shepard, a Cotec spokeswoman.
In this economy, it’s understandable why some landlords gave their land to sketchy buyers and renters. According to the Associated Press, buyers handed over backpacks containing thousands of dollars in cash, sometimes choosing from backpacks containing multiple bills. “We offer cash and offer a quick closing,” said one of the three offers landlords received last year.
But not everyone shares the allure of instant cash. Democrat Sen. Jeff Golden said property owners “should be asked to lease their property for tens of thousands, or even hundreds of thousands, of dollars a year at the beginning of the growing season.” said you should know that there is
Part of the problem, according to Oregon police, is that its lush land has attracted foreign criminals from everywhere from Russia to Mexico to profit from the U.S. cannabis market. So many hoop houses (cheaply built greenhouses) began popping up that local authorities lacked the manpower to shut them all down. The farms in question are known to put workers in poor conditions, including open toilets, and often cut off pay.
And, according to Jackson County Sheriff Nathan Schickler, no one bothers to clean up the waste once a grower is done working, whether it’s an outdoor house or a greenhouse. “Frankly, this is an eyesore for our community and we have no means of dealing with it,” Schickler said.
While many landlords are highlighting the bill’s prospects, others are welcoming it, The Associated Press reports. At least most landlords knew what they were doing was wrong. We believe this action will help stem the tide,” said Jack Dwyer, a homeowner near Selm, Oregon. In 2021, Mr. Dwyer said a large amount of illicit crops nearby had sucked all the water out of the creek running through the property, causing the creek to dry up. And Christopher Hall, whose job it is to involve the public in managing water, believes the bill will finally address the issue. Hall said these cash-purchased illegally grown farms “not only turn streams into gravel roads, but also cause serious human rights abuses and the dumping of garbage, sewage, chemicals and other waste into ditches, riparian areas and streams.” of waste,” he said.