This is my thinking on the current marijuana issues in Josephine county.
I have nothing against the marijuana plant and it uses. What people do with or for their own bodies is none my business.
The problem as I see it is not with the plant but with the rapid influx of out-of-state people rushing in to buy or rent any available land to grow marijuana. This has created division and strife in our county, between some of the growers and their neighbors. Over production has caused prices to drop drastically, and large amounts of marijuana are being black-marketed out of state. This has cast a cloud of uncertainty over whether the whole industry is able to be a viable part of our local economic future.
I’m very sympathetic with those who have invested so much time, energy and money into this new industry. I do understand the hard feelings they have towards the county because of their ever-changing regulatory plans. The uncertainty of it all is not good for the people or for the county. Its rather unfortunate that so many have decided to jump headlong into this business in such a short amount of time, creating bad feelings on both sides of the fence.
This a no-win situation for anyone who gets in the middle of what’s coming. As a property rights advocate for over 30 years I could not win no matter what I said or which side I came down on these issues. The decision about this is just too big to leave up to two commissioners. It looks like the courts or the Land Use Appeals Board may decide the issues for everyone anyway!
I believe part of our freedom is allowing the market, not the state or government, to pick the winners and losers. Free enterprise shouldn’t include regulating or taxing an individual’s property or their businesses.