Now that recreational marijuana is legal in Washington, Portland, Oregon, law enforcement officials are expressing their views regarding residents purchasing marijuana in Washington and then returning to their home state of Oregon.
With Oregon’s new possession decriminalization law set to go into effect July 1st, members of the Portland police force said they were not concerned about the issue as long as residents do not have more marijuana in possession than law will allow. Starting next month, anyone over the age of 21 is allowed up to an ounce of marijuana while not at home and may have as many as eight ounces at home.
Portland Police Sgt. Pete Simpson spoke on the impact:
“We are not doing interdiction on people who are going there to buy their weed and bringing it back. Our drugs and vice division has not and does not focus on low level drug transfers of any kind. They are working large scale operations, which is not what we are talking about.”
Oregon residents have been traveling to Washington to purchase marijuana for some time now, as evidenced by sales data released by the Washington Liquor Control Board. One Vancouver shop’s sales numbers indicated that as much of 50 percent of its sales were made to Oregon residents.
While the Oregon Liquor Control Commission advises against traveling to Washington to purchase marijuana due to concerns over federal enforcement of laws enacted to prevent black market diversion, Simpson advises those doing so to exercise some common sense:
“You don’t need to fly a flag that says, ‘This car is full of weed.’ That’s not something we would suggest.”