(Helen H. Richardson, Denver Post file)

With legal marijuana on Oregon’s horizon, bill advances after stalemate

The Oregon marijuana bill includes a compromise on local control for banning cannabis businesses.

SALEM, Ore. — After weeks of stalemate, a state legislative committee has advanced a bill setting up Oregon’s legal marijuana system.

The approval of the joint House-Senate committee on Monday sends the bill to the full House, which can take it up as soon as this week. Recreational marijuana will be legal in Oregon on July 1.

The measure includes a compromise on local control, an issue that has stymied previous attempts to pass marijuana bills. The compromise would allow local governments to ban recreational and medical marijuana businesses in counties that voted overwhelmingly against Measure 91 in last year’s election. Elsewhere, voters would have to approve a ban on marijuana sales.

Lawmakers did not take up a separate bill that would create a sales tax on pot in place of the harvest tax in Measure 91.