BEND, OR -- Deschutes County Commissioners will decide next month whether to continue to opt out of allowing marijuana grow operations in rural parts of the county. Commissioners agreed to a temporary ban in December, to allow them to continue to discuss the matter.
Deschutes Republicans voted this week to endorse a continued ban. "I was happy to see that the Republicans took a stand," Says Deschutes GOP Chair Bob Perry. "We sent an email out to Tony DeBone and Tammy Baney, who are both Republicans. We sent an email telling them about the results of the unanimous vote, so hopefully they’ll take that to heart."
Perry says he would like to see Commissioners to let county voters decide on the future of the ban, in November. "I remember the first meeting I ever attended, Sheriff Nelson was there, and he said ‘You know folks, you are going to get some tax benefit out of this. But, everything I’ve heard is you’re going to spend 10 times as much on crime prevention and safety as you’re getting in tax benefit.’ That’s the same thing I heard from George Endicott, the Mayor of Redmond. Shane [Nelson] said, ‘Just put it to a vote, put it to a vote.’ We’re going along, really, with the Sheriff’s recommendation."
County Commissioners are scheduled to decide May fourth whether to continue the opt out and send it to voters, or allow the ban to expire.