Tag: Oregon

The Roll-Up #17: Florida Man, Attorney at Law

The Roll-Up features Leafly editors Bruce Barcott, Ben Adlin, and Dave Schmader in a Friday morning roundtable about the week’s top cannabis news.

Leafly Podcast

Episode 17: Florida Man, Attorney at Law

This week: Ben brings us the story of the world’s worst cannabis lawyer, while Dave debriefs us on Canada’s Lift Conference and Bruce gets stuck watching the federal budget debacle. Also, we salute Hawaii’s cannabis security cows. 

What, are you not familiar with the show? Every Friday, Leafly editors Bruce Barcott, Ben Adlin, and Dave Schmader dissect the week’s top stories in cannabis with analysis, arguments, jokes, and obscure cultural references.

The Roll-Up: It’s a news and culture podcast that hits the sweet spot between stoned and scholarly.

Feedback? We love feedback. Tell us what you loved, what you hated, and what we should talk about next. Email us at therollup@yahoo.com.

News Stories Mentioned In Episode 17:

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Previous Episodes:

About Our Music:

The theme song for The Roll-Up is “Turn Me On,” from the EP of the same name by The Shivas. Check out their music on iTunes. For more about the band, see their home page, theshivas.org. This week’s musical excerpt is “Henehene Kou ‘Aka” by Israel Kamakawio’ole, from his classic 1993 album Facing Future.


Thanks you for visiting FLMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Florida. Currently, there is a Medical Marijuana Initiative on the November 2016 Ballot to legalize High-THC Medical Marijuana in the State of Florida. The FLMMCC Florida State Licensed Doctors are ready to review your medical records for a “FREE Pre-Qualification”. This will be the first step in becoming a legal Florida Medical Marijuana patient when the law passes.

Here’s Where US Attorneys Stand on Cannabis Enforcement

Don’t expect Jeff Sessions’ undoing of the Cole memo to unleash a nationwide crackdown. By rescinding Justice Department guidelines that encouraged federal prosecutors to take a hands-off approach in legal states, the attorney general isn’t so much dropping bombs as he is encouraging his lieutenants to fire at will. It will be up to individual US attorneys to pull the trigger.

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In other words, a crackdown on state-legal cannabis, if it comes, will likely happen unevenly. District by district, US attorneys will decide for themselves how to enforce federal cannabis law—or whether to enforce it at all. This is exactly what we saw in California during the last major federal crackdown, in 2011 and 2012. US attorneys in some parts of the state tried to close every dispensary in their districts, while others allowed shops to operate unimpeded.

US attorneys are playing their cards very close to their chests.

In this new normal, it’s crucial to understand not just Sessions’ views, but also where each US attorney stands on cannabis. To that end, we’re tracking how US attorneys in legal states have responded to the removal of the Cole memo—and how likely they are to take action.

You’ll notice a common theme as you read through this piece: US attorneys are playing their cards very close to their chests. Most have issued murky statements that can be interpreted in a number of ways. We’ve done our best to parse the available information and add to those statements to get a better sense of the risk of prosecution in that district.

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Initially we’ll be looking at states that have legalized adult-use cannabis. This page will be updated to include more information about US attorneys in medical-only states.

Each state has at least one federal district. A US attorney acts as the chief federal prosecutor for his or her district. (Courtesy of the US Department of Justice)

Alaska

US Attorney Brian D. Schroder, a Trump appointee whom the Senate confirmed in November, isn’t giving us much to go on. He said in a statement shortly after Sessions’ announcement that his office would continue using “long-established principles” in deciding which cases to charge. He added that violent crime, including that which stems from drug crimes, has been a top priority. His office has declined to comment further.

Schroder’s statement—like his record on cannabis—is awfully thin. Aside from any violent incidents in the state system, which would almost certainly draw his attention, it’s not yet clear what action, if any, his office might take.

Prosecution Risk: UNKNOWN

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California

Central District (Los Angeles)

Interim US Attorney Nicola T. Hanna took his post last week, when Sessions appointed him and 16 others as interim US attorneys. So far both Hanna and his predecessor, Sandra Brown, have been mum on enforcement, which could be an ominous sign if the office weren’t in the midst of a transition. As it is, it doesn’t tell us much.

It’s worth noting that Hanna was a federal prosecutor in Los Angeles and San Diego during the 1990s, when the war on drugs was in full swing. He then left the office for private practice, taking a position at the international firm Gibson Dunn. He hasn’t said much on cannabis, but in the 2016 presidential election, records show he gave $2,700 to the campaign of Chris Christie—a notorious anti-cannabis crusader.

Complicating it all, Hanna’s gig is only temporary. As an interim US attorney, he can serve for 120 days until President Trump must appoint someone and seek Senate confirmation.

Prosecution Risk: LOW/MEDIUM

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Eastern District (Sacramento)

US Attorney Scott W. McGregor, a Trump appointee currently awaiting Senate confirmation, already held the position under President George W. Bush. While in office, he targeted large-scale cannabis operations and developed a reputation for seeking harsh sentences. As the Sacramento Bee reports, at the time he asked local authorities to refer cannabis cases to federal prosecutors. He also went after a pair of dispensary operators who were convicted in 2008 and each sentenced to 20 or more years in prison. (President Barack Obama granted one of the two men clemency in 2017. The other is still behind bars.)

Following Sessions’ memo, McGregor spokesperson Lauren Horwood said the office would evaluate possible enforcement actions “in accordance with our district’s federal law enforcement priorities and resources.” That’s pretty standard boilerplate and doesn’t tell us much, but McGregor’s enforcement history suggests he wouldn’t be shy about going after cannabis businesses if he feels they’re too far out of line.

“He used to be a hardcore, anti-cannabis drug warrior,” Sebastopol lawyer Omar Figueroa told the Sacramento Bee. “I hope he has evolved.”

Prosecution Risk: MEDIUM

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Northern District (San Francisco)

Acting US Attorney Alex G. Tse took over for former US Attorney Brian Stretch, who announced through a spokesperson on Jan. 4 that he would be leaving the post. It was the same day Sessions rescinded the Cole memo, though Stretch said the announcement was not the reason for his departure.

Despite their San Francisco office location, Northern District prosecutors have a reputation for interfering with California’s legal-cannabis system even when local officials push back. The office famously undertook—and famously lost—a multiyear case against Oakland’s Harborside Health Center, perhaps the state’s best-known dispensary.

Tse, for his part, spent most of the 2011-12 federal crackdown in California working in the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office. The experience likely gave him an understanding of the close working relationship between federal and local authorities—something that might give him pause before bringing cases against locally approved, state-licensed businesses.

Prosecution Risk: LOW

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Southern District (San Diego)

Interim US Attorney Adam L. Braverman was appointed by Jeff Sessions in November, though he’s been a federal prosecutor in the Southern District since 2008. His focus was large, international drug-trafficking cartels, and after being sworn in as US attorney last year, he said he wanted to prioritize “those crimes committed by transnational criminal organizations.”

On its face, that seems just fine. State-legal cannabis has shrunk the illegal market in the United States, and Braverman may rightly see prosecuting licensed businesses as a surefire way to reinvigorate cartels. But sometimes when you’re a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

More worrisome is Braverman’s statement following the Sessions memo: “The Department of Justice is committed to reducing violent crime and enforcing the laws as enacted by Congress. The cultivation, distribution, and possession of marijuana has long been and remains a violation of federal law,” he said. “We will continue to utilize long-established prosecutorial priorities to carry out our mission to combat violent crime, disrupt and dismantle transnational criminal organizations, and stem the rising tide of the drug crisis.”

If Braverman does his homework, he’ll see that legalization tends to accomplish those priorities. But if he views legal cannabis as part of the problem, watch out.

Prosecution Risk: MEDIUM

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 Colorado

(Courtesy of DOJ)

US Attorney Robert C. Troyer became an acting US attorney in 2016 and was appointed interim US attorney by Jeff Sessions in November. Asked by the Denver Post about the Sessions memo, Troyer’s office provided this response:

Here is the question we ask every time we consider allocating our finite resources to prosecute any of the vast number of federal crimes we can prosecute, from violent crime to immigration crime to opioid crime: Will this prosecution make Colorado safer? … Under the attorney general’s new memo, we have more freedom and flexibility to make decisions that make Colorado safer by prosecuting individuals and organizations for marijuana crimes that significantly threaten our community safety.

US attorneys often point to their own district’s unique needs when explaining their enforcement priorities, so this doesn’t tell us much—although it does suggest Troyer could take action in response to local officials who believe legal cannabis is a threat to public safety, as has happened in past crackdowns.

For now, Troyer said he would “continue to take” the approach his office has been using—suggesting not much will change in the short term. Colorado Attorney General Cynthia Coffman told the Post that she had asked Troyer to “please notify me … if there is going to be any change in those priorities or in those actions so that we have a heads-up. And I have his agreement that he will do that.”​ In the meantime, she said, “I would encourage people not to freak out.”

Prosecution Risk: LOW/MEDIUM

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Maine

(Courtesy of DOJ)

US Attorney Halsey B. Frank, a Trump nominee, was confirmed by the Senate in October. To his credit, he’s issued a lengthy statement on the Sessions move. Unfortunately, like most other US attorney statements so far, it doesn’t offer much in the way of clarity. “My job is to enforce federal law, not countermand it,” Frank said. “I do not have the authority to categorically declare that my office will not prosecute a class of crime or persons.”

Unlike some other US attorneys, Frank has spoken out publicly against legalized cannabis in the past. In a 2013 column in The Forecaster newspaper (published after the Cole memo), he wrote that when “there is a conflict between state and federal law, federal law prevails.” Maine’s state law, which at the time allowed medical use of cannabis, “is not a defense to federal prosecution for manufacturing or distributing marijuana,” he wrote.

Lest you think he was just opining on legal procedure, he also included this veiled jab at legalization: “Society can only tolerate a certain number of intoxicated people on its streets and highways, at school, at work and at play.” (You can read his full column here.)

One bright spot, especially for individuals: Frank’s recent statement notes that his office “has prioritized the prosecution of cases involving the trafficking of opiates, cocaine, crack and similar hard drugs.” Prosecuting individuals for possession, he said, “has not been a priority.”

Prosecution Risk: MEDIUM

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Massachusetts

US Attorney Andrew E. Lelling, a Trump nominee, was confirmed by the Senate in December. In response to the Sessions memo, he issued a statement saying he could not “provide assurances that certain categories of participants in the state-level marijuana trade will be immune from federal prosecution.”

This is a straightforward rule of law issue.  Congress has unambiguously made it a federal crime to cultivate, distribute and/or possess marijuana.  As a law enforcement officer in the Executive Branch, it is my sworn responsibility to enforce that law, guided by the Principles of Federal Prosecution.  To do that, however, I must proceed on a case-by-case basis, assessing each matter according to those principles and deciding whether to use limited federal resources to pursue it.

This has the noncommittal air of some other US attorneys’ statements, but the tone is comparatively harsh. While it doesn’t signal a categorical crackdown on cannabis businesses, it certainly suggests the office could bring targeted actions against certain state-legal actors.

More worrisome is the relative lack of local pushback to Sessions rescinding the Cole memo. While officials in many other legal states have decried the move, Massachusetts elected officials, many of whom opposed the 2016 ballot question that legalized cannabis, have been relatively quiet.

Prosecution Risk: MEDIUM/HIGH

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Nevada

Interim US Attorney Dayle Elieson was one of 17 interim US attorneys appointed by Sessions last week. Before the appointment, she was an assistant US attorney in Texas, where she focused on fraud, money laundering, and terrorism. As a new arrival to Nevada, she’s a relatively unknown quantity, and Nevada officials are eagerly awaiting further guidance from the office.

“I know that the US attorney in Colorado has already said that he is not going to enforce federal laws against the legalized marijuana industry in that state,” Gov. Brian Sandoval told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. “I would like to see something similar here in Nevada, but that’s a discussion that needs to be had.” (It’s worth noting that Sandoval may be overstating assurances by Colorado US Attorney Robert C. Troyer; see the Massachusetts section of this story, above.)

Nevada’s legal cannabis program has strong support from state and local officials, which could help dissuade Elieson from taking a hardline stance legal against legal cannabis while still new to the office. Federal prosecutors tend to work closely with local law enforcement and other partners, and targeting cannabis could risk hurting those relationships.

As an interim US attorney, Elieson’s post is only temporary. She’ll be able to serve for 120 days before Trump must nominate someone for the position and seek Senate confirmation.

Prosecution Risk: UNKNOWN

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Oregon

(Courtesy of DOJ)

US Attorney Billy J. Williams, who became an acting US attorney in 2015 and was nominated by Trump in November to remain in the post, has already expressed concerns with the state’s cannabis regulatory system. In an interview with the Associated Press last year, he complained about what he said was insufficient enforcement by the state to prevent cannabis from being illegally exported to states where it’s not legal. Stopping diversion to other states was a key piece of the now-rescinded Cole memo.

Following Sessions’ move last week, Williams put out the following statement:

As noted by Attorney General Sessions, today’s memo on marijuana enforcement directs all U.S. Attorneys to use the reasoned exercise of discretion when pursuing prosecutions related to marijuana crimes. We will continue working with our federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement partners to pursue shared public safety objectives, with an emphasis on stemming the overproduction of marijuana and the diversion of marijuana out of state, dismantling criminal organizations and thwarting violent crime in our communities.

It sounds like Williams might be OK with Oregon’s cannabis program when it works, but failures—including things like diversion, violence, or illegal sales to minors—could prompt him to take action. So he’s presumably not too pleased with reports like one issued this week by Oregon cannabis regulators that found a number of stores around the state that reportedly sold cannabis to minors.

Prosecution Risk: LOW/MEDIUM

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Washington, DC

US Attorney Jessie K. Liu, a Trump nominee whom the Senate confirmed in September, has said through a spokesperson that the office is “committed to reducing violent crime and dismantling criminal gangs and large-scale drug distribution networks that pose a threat to public safety.”

Washington, DC, is unusual in that it allows individuals to grow, possess, consume, and even give away cannabis but, due to pressure from federal lawmakers, forbids purchases or sales. The laws have led to the emergence of a thriving gray market in which consumers make “donations” or purchase other items and are “gifted” cannabis as part of the transaction. Liu may take a closer look at these businesses—they are, after all, operating in Jeff Sessions’ backyard—but it seems unlikely at this point that she’ll bring cases against individuals who follow the law.

Prosecution Risk: LOW/MEDIUM

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Washington State

Eastern District (Spokane)

Interim US Attorney Joseph Harrington was another of the 17 interim US attorneys appointed by Sessions last week. He’s a longtime federal prosecutor, with nearly three decades of experience handling the office’s criminal division, health care cases, and terrorism matters.

Harrington has said hardly anything about how Sessions’ move would affect his office’s cannabis enforcement. Immediately following the undoing of the Cole memo, he directed questions directly to the main Justice Department press office in Washington, DC. The Eastern District, nevertheless, has come to be seen as an aggressive enforcer by many in the state’s legal cannabis industry. The office sought criminal charges, for example, against a family of medical cannabis patients who became known as the Kettle Falls Five.

Harrington filed a motion in October to put that case on pause, noting that a federal spending provision—which had been adopted three years earlier and halted a blockbuster California case in May 2016—prevented the case from going forward. But that provision, the Rohrabacher–Blumenauer amendment, is set to expire later this month, and it only blocks prosecutions against medical operations. Currently nothing stands in the way of Harrington bringing cases against the state’s many adult-use businesses.

Prosecution Risk: MEDIUM

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Western District (Seattle)

US Attorney Annette L. Hayes, who became acting US attorney in 2014 after her predecessor resigned, remained in the position after President Barack Obama declined to make an appointment. On the day Sessions rescinded the Cole memo, she issued this statement:

Today the Attorney General reiterated his confidence in the basic principles that guide the discretion of all U.S. Attorneys around the country, and directed that those principles shepherd enforcement of federal law regarding marijuana.  He also emphasized his belief that U.S. Attorneys are in the best position to address public safety in their districts, and address the crime control problems that are pressing in their communities.  Those principles have always been at the core of what the United States Attorney’s Office for Western Washington has done – across all threats to public safety, including those relating to marijuana.  As a result, we have investigated and prosecuted over many years cases involving organized crime, violent and gun threats, and financial crimes related to marijuana.  We will continue to do so to ensure – consistent with the most recent guidance from the Department – that our enforcement efforts with our federal, state, local and tribal partners focus on those who pose the greatest safety risk to the people and communities we serve.

This may be the most supportive statement of state-legal cannabis to come out of a US attorney’s office in the wake of Sessions’ announcement. Read between the lines. Hayes’ almost cheeky use of “reiterated” suggests little or nothing has changed in her eyes. Rather than read Sessions’ move as a sign the attorney general wants to see more cannabis cases—which, given Sessions’ views on cannabis, it almost certainly was—Hayes’ comments interpret the memo as an endorsement of local discretion. “Thanks for trusting us to do a good job,” the statement seems to say. It’s likely that wasn’t by accident.

Prosecution Risk: LOW

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.


Thanks you for visiting FLMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Florida. Currently, there is a Medical Marijuana Initiative on the November 2016 Ballot to legalize High-THC Medical Marijuana in the State of Florida. The FLMMCC Florida State Licensed Doctors are ready to review your medical records for a “FREE Pre-Qualification”. This will be the first step in becoming a legal Florida Medical Marijuana patient when the law passes.

Meet the Makers: Behind the Scenes With Portland’s Cutting-Edge Edibles Producers

Carrie and Jody Solomon, Leif Goods

The full lineup of Leif Goods infused chocolate bars: CBD Chocolate Bar with Black Diamond Flake Sea Salt, Mint Hibiscus, Classic Double Chocolate bar, Peanut Butter & Jelly dusted with dried strawberry powder, Limited Edition Sesame Harissa bar dusted with harissa seasoning and the New Mexican chocolate bar with roasted pepitas. (Oriana Koren for Leafly)

Leif Goods has been carving a space for themselves in the culinary cannabis industry since 2014, when the brand began operating in the medical cannabis realm before adult-use cannabis was a reality in Oregon. Leif is owned and operated by husband-and-wife team Jody and Carrie Solomon, who were on the cusp of the booming edible scene back when they first began learning how to make truffles. “We taught ourselves how to make chocolate,” Jody recalls. “We could see legalization getting ready to happen, so we taught ourselves how to make chocolate bars and then it kind of just took off.”

Both artists, Carrie used her graphic design expertise while Jody brought his photography skills to their business. Accustomed to teaching themselves new skills, they leaped together into the edible market, and with that leap they brought along respected friends in the Portland culinary scene to augment the quality and flavors of their chocolates.

One of Leif’s most popular medicated bars is topped with ground hibiscus flower sourced from local teasan, The Jasmine Pearl Tea Company. Leif Goods is focused on creating high-end, food-focused edible chocolate goods while highlighting the culinary talent found in the Portland food scene via collaborations with local coffee roasters, chefs, and others. (Oriana Koren for Leafly)

Leif has positioned itself as a foodie-friendly edibles company, attracting fence straddlers who have long been curious about edible cannabis.

“We want to celebrate the awesome food in this town,” Jody tells me. Their first chocolate bar, which contained coffee beans, biscotti bits, and cannabis, was widely popular in the medical market before cannabis became fully legal in Oregon. The Solomons are both huge fans of chocolate personally, and their research includes eating a lot of high-quality chocolate to decipher flavor profiles they like—not a bad gig. From there, ideation sessions often lead into a discussion of which of their favorite culinary makers could be good to incorporate into their bars as additional flavors to complement the cacao beans used.

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For the espresso-biscotti bar, “We tried different local coffees in the bar so we found the one that really worked well—Ristretto Roasters. They roast their beans until they caramelize so once pulverized that sweetness comes out instead of tasting like a bitter coffee,” says Jody. “There’s a local bakery here called Roman Candle and they make the most amazing biscotti so we’re like, ‘Why don’t we use the best biscotti we can get? And the best coffee we can get? And put it in our bar?’”

Layflat of all the Leif Goods edible bars. Co-owner Carrie Solomon is principal designer at Leif Goods and uses clean but bright branding to elevate the idea of what a cannabis edible can look and taste like. (Oriana Koren for Leafly)

This focus on being food-first (instead of milligram-first) accounts for a big portion of Leif’s success. With a dedication to conscientious sourcing and whole ingredients, Leif has positioned itself as a foodie-friendly edibles company, attracting fence straddlers who have long been curious about edible cannabis but for a time weren’t compelled by the products on the market.

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The recent influx of visitors to Oregon, thanks both to legal cannabis and high-profile events like the total solar eclipse, have brought international interest to Portland’s cannabis scene and the makers within it. The popularity of Leif’s bars can also be attributed to their balanced THC to CBD ratio: When the cannabinoid levels are precise and consistent, edibles become much more manageable, with CBD keeping the effects of THC in check to ensure a balanced and thoroughly modern edibles experience. This ensures that newcomers and old hats alike enjoy their Leif experience every time.

Infused chocolate bars at Leif Goods’ kitchen in Northeast Portland. (Oriana Koren for Leafly)

Headquarters: Overlook in North Portland

Years working with cannabis: 4

Signature product: Mint Hibiscus Chocolate Bar

Favorite strain: Anything super-high in CBD: Harlequin, ACDC, etc.

● ● ●


Thanks you for visiting FLMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Florida. Currently, there is a Medical Marijuana Initiative on the November 2016 Ballot to legalize High-THC Medical Marijuana in the State of Florida. The FLMMCC Florida State Licensed Doctors are ready to review your medical records for a “FREE Pre-Qualification”. This will be the first step in becoming a legal Florida Medical Marijuana patient when the law passes.

Oregon Politicians Push Back Against Sessions Memo

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Oregon’s governor said Thursday the state will fight U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ move to roll back a lenient policy on federal enforcement of the drug to protect its economic interests.

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Gov. Kate Brown said marijuana is an important component of the state’s economy, creating more than 19,000 jobs. Oregon was the first state to decriminalize personal possession, in 1973. It legalized medical marijuana in 1998 and recreational use in 2014.

“The principle of federalism is at stake.”

Knute Buehler, Republican gubernatorial candidate

“My staff and state agencies … will fight to continue Oregon’s commitment to a safe and prosperous recreational marijuana market,” Brown said.

Republican gubernatorial candidate Knute Buehler said Sessions’ move was an infringement on states’ rights.

“The federal government should respect the will of Oregon voters; the principle of federalism is at stake,” Buehler said.

Sessions ended an Obama-era policy that allowed cannabis to flourish in states and will let federal prosecutors in legal marijuana states decide how aggressively to enforce U.S. law prohibiting the drug.

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Billy J. Williams, U.S. attorney for Oregon, indicated he would maintain the same limited level of enforcement.

“We will continue working with our federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement partners to pursue shared public safety objectives, with an emphasis on stemming the overproduction of marijuana and the diversion of marijuana out of state,” Williams said in a statement.

Oregon Democratic Rep. Earl Blumenauer urged people to mobilize against Sessions’ decision.

“Going against the majority of Americans — including a majority of Republican voters — who want the federal government to stay out of the way is perhaps one of the stupidest decisions the attorney general has made,” Blumenauer said.

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An amendment by Blumenauer and California Republican Rep. Dana Rohrabacher prevents the Justice Department from interfering with state medical marijuana programs.

Don Morse, director of the Oregon Cannabis Business Council, said the amendment also protects the recreational side to some extent, because “it is difficult to distinguish one from the other.” Cannabis grown legally in Oregon can be sold to medical marijuana patients from recreational shops.

Congress recently passed a short-term funding bill that maintained the Blumenauer-Rohrabacher amendment. The bill expires on Jan. 19, and Blumenauer is working to ensure it gets into the next measure, his office in Washington said.

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President Donald Trump made a campaign promise not to interfere with state marijuana laws, Blumenauer said. That was echoed by U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, an Oregon Democrat who co-sponsored legislation from New Jersey Democratic Sen. Cory Booker to legalize marijuana at the federal level.

In Oregon, Morse said he expects “business as usual” in the marijuana industry.

“Legal marijuana has become so entrenched in the U.S. — it’s a multibillion-dollar industry — and I don’t see the people who are behind this, people like myself, rolling over for the Justice Department, which means Congress will have to act,” Morse said, adding that he thinks lawmakers should declassify marijuana as a dangerous drug.


Thanks you for visiting FLMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Florida. Currently, there is a Medical Marijuana Initiative on the November 2016 Ballot to legalize High-THC Medical Marijuana in the State of Florida. The FLMMCC Florida State Licensed Doctors are ready to review your medical records for a “FREE Pre-Qualification”. This will be the first step in becoming a legal Florida Medical Marijuana patient when the law passes.

Best in State: The Top Cannabis Locations, Products, and Activities in Oregon in 2017


Our Best in State series spotlights the top cannabis dispensaries, companies, products, and activities in the largest cannabis markets in 2017.

Many years ago, I developed an inkling of an inclination that I liked cannabis. At the time, I was—as we all were—buying whatever skunk my buddy, or his buddy’s buddy, could sell me. Over time, as I became more interested, I start reading online about cannabis law, and cannabis history, and dreaming of a day when, you know, they would just figure it out. They could tax it, and I could go to the store and buy cannabis the same as liquor, or tobacco, or chocolate. It felt like a wild dream, and yet so obvious.

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Fast forward to today and younger me can hardly believe it—holy shit, they figured it out. We’re through the looking glass here, people. Oregon cannabis in 2017 is a Roman Bacchanal, a moveable, smokeable feast of glorious indulgence the likes of which I dared not dream in my younger years. There has literally never been a better time to love cannabis in Oregon. No hyperbole, no exaggeration—never in human history. You can tell your children you lived through a golden age: the tip of the spear, the cusp of the wave, the moment when cannabis became culinary, cultural, societal, casual, progressive, capable of righting past wrongs and making new myths, delicious, relieving, personal, political, capitalist and yet for the greater good, new and yet rooted in the past, the old, the ancient, and better—frankly—than I ever thought imaginable, all at once. The moment bathtub gin became Bacardi, or better. The cannabis singularity; cannabis Valhalla. And we’re only getting started.

So with that in mind, it was tough to adjudicate the categories below for the best of Oregon cannabis in 2017. What follows is imperfect, because anyone claiming perfect critical knowledge and recall of our ever-changing cannabis moment is selling you oregano. I hope I’ve been able to smoke, snack, ponder, and parse it all to an eighth of a degree of accuracy. What a wonderful time to be alive and on Team Cannabis.

Best Overall Dispensary: Farma

Portland, OR

After a not-inconsiderable amount of hemming and hawing and revisiting a clutch of faves, this is the only place I could land. Farma’s deft trick is not just in its level of curation, though this is a deeply curated dispensary, carefully chosen without being overwhelming. Nor is it just in the staff, who have met my questions and curiosity with what the Irish in a bar setting might call “good banter.” I’m also not calling it the best dispensary solely on aesthetics, though those are there too. There is this canna-wonk, New Modern Science Chill thing happening here that feels democratizing, like it’s a new sort of cannabis culture expression, at once cutting-edge and laid back, like I’m in an AP class for cannabis with the rest of the smart, weird kids. Farma balances all of this, at the same time, in a kind of high wire act that’s impossible to ignore.

If you live in lower Manhattan, or in New Orleans’ French Quarter, your neighborhood cocktail bar might be one of the best in country just by virtue of closeness to the beating heart of that industry. Same goes if you live in Southeast Portland and your neighborhood shop is Farma.

Astoria, OR

Awesome homemade pre-rolls for $4 on Tuesdays! Ounces as low as $150! Friendly staff, deep selection across product categories, take-home seeds, a grip of pre-rolls under $7, and all of it with a charming Astorian vibe. Locals clearly love the spot, but if you’re in town for the weekend, this is your crucial first stop, and out of towners are certainly just as welcome.

Best in State: 2017's Top <strong><a href=Marijuana in Oregon | Leafly" width="840" height="525" />(Courtesy of Kings of Canna)

Portland, OR

Since 2015 this has been the Oregon dispensary with the biggest “wow” factor thanks to the space’s transportive, atmospheric approach to interior design and vibe—it feels more like an apothecary or craft cocktail lounge than a dispensary. Nowhere else in Oregon makes the flower look so pretty, each bud framed in a U-shaped vintage optical case that’s just as impressive after several dozen visits. The flower is curated, the budtenders are gregarious, and the lobby has ample reading material and comfy chairs (like a chill little Victorian cannabis antechamber). I’ll drive out of my way to make solo stops or take people here from out of town, even if they don’t like cannabis (yet). There’s something special to the shop.

Best Budtender: Tiara Darnell, Farma

Portland, OR

More than food, and more than wine, cannabis is where the soul of Oregon customer service lives. Tiara Darnell is a consummate budtender and cannabis advocate working at Farma, frequently dropping perfect descriptors, as the following of a CBD strain: “This makes me feel like Me Plus.” And if this sort of insight isn’t enough, she’ll pull out a binder of terpene breakdown information to prove it, then recommend some cannabis-infused orange juice as a perfect accompaniment.

Best Overall Company: Quill

Best in State: 2017's Top <strong>Marijuana</strong> in Oregon | Leafly(Courtesy of Quill)

Portland, OR

From the people behind OMFGCO/Rare Industries, I think this is the single most transformative product in Oregon cannabis history, a harbinger for a brave new future of casual, perfectly dosed, aesthetically minded cannabis consumers. Tucked away for local travel, brought along for a puff before dinner, and part of the keys-wallet-phone coterie of must-have items grabbed before leaving the house. The future of cannabis doesn’t look like unwieldy dab rigs—it looks like the Quill, which feels beautiful to hold and behold. You wouldn’t know it was cannabis unless someone told you.

Best in State: 2017's Top <strong>Marijuana</strong> in Oregon | Leafly(Courtesy of Pruf Cultivar)

Portland, OR

The all-around best cannabis flower I tried this year, by a country mile. Incredible winter fruit aromatics from the Tangie, linked up with the famously euphoric headspace of GSC, resulting in an overall smoke that is soothing yet happily alert. When it comes to the anti-anxiety properties of a given strain, everyone’s experience is difference, but I want to shout it from the rooftops: There’s some magic in this Tangie blend.

Best Concentrate Product: Universal Cannabis Tonic (Meadow Blend) by Luminous Botanicals

Portland, OR

A concentrate, edible, and topical—for sheer versatility, there’s no product with more applications than the aptly named Universal Cannabis Topic. Rub a little on one of your sore spots; take a sip of the pleasant blend of organic almond and coconut oil; you can even take it into the bedroom with you later. The “Meadow Blend” is a 1:1 THC:CBD blend, with cannabis sourced from Green Source Gardens and East Fork Cultivars—both family owned and farmed without synthetics.

Bend, OR

Mix white chocolate, citrus, and active, uplifting cannabinoids, and you’ve got WYLD’s line of white chocolate edibles, available in 10-pack boxes or single servings. These practically jumped off the dispensary table to me when they debuted, and they’ve proved to provide a perfectly dialed-in combination of flavor, elevation, and energy, and they cost about $5 each (or sometimes as low as $3.50).

Best Topical: Rescue Rub by Peak Extracts

Best in State: 2017's Top Marijuana in Oregon | Leafly(Courtesy of Peak Extracts)

Portland, OR

All cannabis is personal. For many, a topical rub is something associated with nostalgia, bringing back childhood memories of VapoRub used to alleviate symptoms of sickness, or Icy-Hot to soothe sore muscles after athletics. Peak Extracts’ Rescue Rub deftly blends CO2-extracted essential oils from a variety of traditional Chinese pain relief herbs with cannabis, and comes on with a subtle tingle that lets you know it’s working. It has quietly become a favorite for cannabis-friendly massage and acupuncture therapists across the state, and while the effects are subtle, the relief is real.

Portland, OR

My wife is an infrequent cannabis user, but this is her holy grail: a clean, easy to use CBD pen with noticeable calming effects. She’s not alone in loving this product, either. Select’s pens deliver a microdose of mellow vapor in flavors like lavender, mint, or citrus.

Best Cannabis Accessory: EVOLVD

Eugene, OR

From concept to execution to basking in the afterglow, I’m enormously impressed by the work done this year by EVOLVD out of Eugene, Oregon. They appear to have solved some basic use issues involved in vaping cannabis extracts, rolling out a leak-proof pen-and-cartridge system made of stainless steel. It’s a pleasure to use and won’t get gross in your pocket—this alone would be notable. But they’ve paired that with a range of “strain specific, terpene steeped” extracts in flavors like Tiramisu (a blend of Cookies, Sourdough, and Vanilla Gorilla) that, glory of glories, actually taste good. You know how often the promise of a product can wind up being a load of hooey? This actually is vaping, evolved.

Best High Activity: Summer nights at the Skidmore Bluffs

Portland, OR

“Old Portland” and “Retro Oregon” are these highly fraught, nostalgia loaded, imperfect concepts. But there are some spaces, some sites that feel trapped in time in the best way. At the Skidmore Bluffs in North Portland, people have been smoking cannabis and watching the sun set for decades. You ride your bike there, or enjoy a long walk, and pack a picnic. The sky changes dramatically over the West Hills and Forest Park over the course of a few hours—prime time is around 7 p.m. on one of those long, hot July nights. Folks bring their dogs and set up picnic blankets; I’m definitely smoking a pre-roll with my friends from Greeley Gallery up the road. There is no rush at all. It’s free to be here and nobody makes you leave. It’s just off the track enough to be gentle, and mellow, and every time you go it’s someone’s first time, and someone else’s hundredth. Here, Portland is old and new all at once.

Portland, OR

Oregon has an embarrassment of riches in this category, but when the moon is high and mood is right (and I’m just exactly the right kind of toasted), I want a burger. But not just any burger—a Stoopid Burger, the creation of owners John Hunt and Danny Moore, who earlier this year moved their operation from a food cart on North Williams to a brick and mortar at 23rd and Northeast Glisan. This is arguably Portland’s best cheeseburger and inarguably Portland’s funniest cheeseburger menu, from the standard Stoopid (cheddar, hotlink, ham, egg) to the cult of the Wicked (pineapple mango habanero chutney and peanut butter) to the downright Ignorant Burger ($40, basically the entire kitchen on a bun, including a chicken strip). There are also baskets, fried snacks, a serious club sandwich, and housemade Stoopid Juice (a Kool-Aid riff) to wash it all down. This is serious, playful, deeply satisfying high food—chicken strips for the stoner soul.

Lead image courtesy of Quill


Thanks you for visiting FLMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Florida. Currently, there is a Medical Marijuana Initiative on the November 2016 Ballot to legalize High-THC Medical Marijuana in the State of Florida. The FLMMCC Florida State Licensed Doctors are ready to review your medical records for a “FREE Pre-Qualification”. This will be the first step in becoming a legal Florida Medical Marijuana patient when the law passes.

Leafly List: The Best Cannabis Dispensaries in Oregon, Winter 2017

THE LEAFLY LIST: OREGON

Winter 2017

The Leafly List ranks the top dispensaries and retail stores in each of the major North American cannabis markets every quarter. This region-specific version is designed to provide helpful, community-based information for cannabis consumers looking for the most relevant dispensaries in Oregon. It highlights the most talked-about locations in the state based on customer feedback metrics* and reviews of each location’s quality, service, and atmosphere. Check out the Leafly List FAQ for more information on how dispensaries are ranked.

The Leafly List is based on 100% objective customer feedback and data collected by Leafly. Businesses CANNOT pay for a spot on the list.

Beaverton, OR

(Courtesty of Green Mart)(Courtesy of Green Mart)

Green Mart prides itself in being a one-stop shop, offering a large selection of non-GMO, organic cannabis and cannabis accessories. Customers appreciate that they accept debit and credit cards, and are pleased with both the quality and quantity of strains and products available.

Index: 89.6

What to Buy: Tangie Terp Sugar from Buddies

What People Are Saying:

“I’m looking forward to my payday pilgrimage to this great medicine store! I love the range of prices, consistently excellent products, and super-friendly atmosphere. It’s easy to become a regular “where everybody knows your name” – at least it feels that way. Lots of great stocking stuffers in the cases now, too. Enjoy this great store!” —leorising

214 NW Couch Street Portland, OR

(Courtesy of Rose City Wellness)

Rose City Wellness Center, located at the heart of downtown, is proud to be one of the first dispensaries in Portland. Opened in 2011, the location has built a loyal following by selling high-quality flower, concentrates, and more in a safe and comfortable atmosphere.

Index: 87.6

What to Buy: Peach White Chocolate – Indica from WYLD

What People are Saying:

“Rose City Wellness consistently provides top shelf , high quality flower and concentrates. I am never disappointed with my purchases. Kevin at RCW has a great knowledge of the product they have.His recommendations have never failed to make me a happy customer. Thanks for the customer service!” —DallyV

Talent, OR

Green Valley Wellness <strong>Marijuana</strong> Dispensary Talent Oregon Leafly List(Courtesy of Green Valley Wellness)

Serving southern Oregon with an extensive product selection (particularly of concentrates, edibles, and pre-rolls), Green Valley Wellness has earned a stellar reputation for friendly staff, dependable quality, and fair pricing.

Index: 84.88

What to Buy: CBD Hercules Muscle Salve from Sun God Medicinals

What People Are Saying:

“I live in Medford but drive out of my way to go to this dispensary. One, the people working here are humble and knowledgable. They obviously loving their job at Green Valley, and have been highly informative on new fun stuff I knew nothing about! from John to Iris and everyone between who has helped me, I always leave feeling like I got to see a friend I hadn’t seen in awhile. Their selection is always very organized, fresh, sits in a spacious environment, and they are continually getting new product in. They also send me coupons on my phone if I haven’t been in for awhile, which is AWESOME and no other place I’ve been to does. I’ll be back soon!” —HannahHaze007

Portland, OR

(Courtesy of Nectar Barbur)

Nectar opened their first dispensary in 2013 and has since grown to be one of the most popular names in the Oregon cannabis market. Open 365 days a year, Nectar’s Barbur location lives up to its Nectar name with ultra-generous daily deals on a wide variety of cannabis products, as well as top-shelf selections that are sure to please the most discerning cannaseurs.

Index: 84.84

What People Are Saying:

“I love this place. Stumbled upon it when another shop was closed due to an outage but Nectar stayed open. Haven’t gone anywhere else since. The preroll menu is the biggest I’ve seen in OR shops, starting at $3(!), and the staff is super helpful with making selections. Just tell them how much you’re thinking of spending and they’ve got it from there.” —mvice

Gresham, OR

Nectar Gresham Oregon <strong>Marijuana</strong> Dispensary November Leafly List(Courtesy of Nectar)

Leafly reviewers appreciate Nectar’s large, bountiful selection of cannabis products as well as their fashionable line of apparel and accessories. Plus, their budtenders are patient and willing to answer as many questions as you can throw at them, regardless of how busy they are.

Index: 84.6

What People Are Saying:

“By FAR the classiest dispensary I’ve ever been to. Professional branding, knowledgeable yet humble budtenders, great weekly recurring deals all make Gresham Nectar my go-to dispensary!” —PetuniaSkeeterson

Grants Pass, OR

(Courtesy of Tamerans)

The strain wall at Tamerans is designed to let customers get up close and personal with an abundant selection of flower before they commit, and a team of helpful budtenders are always available to answer any questions. Those looking to get in and out in a hurry shouldn’t worry, though, this Grants Pass dispensary keeps their Leafly menu updated to facilitate speedy purchases.

Index: 84.04

What People Are Saying:

“Best dispensary in a 100 mile radius hands down!! Great atmosphere, awesome selection and lowest prices I’ve seen. Ten strains for $4!!! Can’t wait to try them all. For top quality customer service, best selection and lowest prices, this is the ONLY dispensary I frequent!!” —PropperTopperOffer

Ashland, OR

(Courtesy of House of Leaves)(Courtesy of House of Leaves)

The House of Leaves team prides itself on catering to the needs of every patient. This wheelchair-accessible dispensary offers senior and military discounts as well as daily deals, and patients always report leaving satisfied with the customer service and purchases.

Index: 83.44

What People Are Saying:

“By far one of the best dispensary locations I’ve been in. knowledgable staff. friendly. down to earth and very reasonable pricing. Im very picky about my buds and this place got me to spend my money.” —cannbiz

17417 SE McLoughlin Blvd Portland, OR

Maritime Cafe - Gladstone recreational cannabis dispensary in Portland, Oregon(Courtesy of Maritime Café Gladstone)

Maritime Cafe was established in 2011 to serve Oregon’s medical marijuana patients, and the store is now serving recreational consumers as well. It has a large assortment of cannabis and the comfortable cafe makes for a good place to kick back and relax while waiting for your buds.

Index: 82.92

What People Are Saying:

“Excellent service delivered by all staff! I was helped by someone with great knowledge of his products, who gave me a lot of options and seriously catered to my needs as a newbie, I believe his name was Sam and he was very welcoming & informative. I’d recommend Maritime to anyone looking for quality, friendly help and a wonderful atmosphere!” —suhdaisy

Salem, OR

green-cross-cannabis-emporium-leafly-list(Courtesy of Green Cross Cannabis Emporium)

One word: bonus bags. Well, two words. Either way, this 2500 square foot dispensary knows how to wow Salem customers with some truly amazing deals, fantastic service, quality cannabis, and a beautiful dispensary showroom.

Index: 82.6

What People Are Saying:

“This is my favorite place to go period. Not only are the prices more than fair and there is a fantastic selection, but the staff is kind, competent, and helpful! I love when I come in and Drew is there. I tend to get edibles but no matter what I get I’m never disappointed.” —agenthardass

1926 NE 40th Ave Portland, OR

(Courtesy of Silver Stem)

Silver Stem Fine Cannabis is working to create a world where everyone has the right to care for their own health using alternative medicine. The location provides patients with an understanding and knowledgeable staff who are eager to educate and empower patients. It’s well-known for its quality product, safe practices, and transparent nature.

Index: 80.36

What People Are Saying:

“Mine and my boyfriend’s favorite place to get our meds. Always great service, an honest, knowledgeable staff, and the rare quality of non-snobbery. The owner is very kind, the prices are fantastic, especially shatter from the low end price to super high end. Love it.” —bho67

Salem, OR USA

(Courtesy of Green Cross Cannabis Emporium)

This sweet Salem dispensary has a big selection of fine cannabis products and an even bigger commitment to customer service. This well-appointed and thoughtfully laid-out storefront is staffed by a team of compassionate, knowledgeable cannabis professionals who are dedicated to helping people from all walks of life find the right cannabis products in a welcoming, educating atmosphere.

Index: 79.84

What People Are Saying:

“Puts other dispensaries to shame. This place is amazing, class act. I’m still in the experimental stage and find staff very knowledgeable. I’ve never been disappointed with their suggestions. Lindsey rocks!! She has helped me find some true favs, :))” —maril33

McMinnville, OR

(Courtesy of Green Ridge Apothecary)

In a little house in the middle of McMinnville sits a cozy, neighborhood dispensary that caters to the medical patients and adult-use customers of Western Oregon. The staff at Green Ridge Apothecary believe that informed customers are happy customers, so they’re always willing to spend as much time as is necessary to ensure that everyone leaves happier—and more knowledgeable—than they were when they walked in.

Index: 79.2

What People Are Saying:

“Great staff, clean, professional, SO many strains, quality, cozy & best of all… no waiting in a “doctor’s office” to be called when it’s your turn. You just walk in & enjoy, it’s a little house converted into a cute little shop. My favorite so far.” —jnfrceleste

Astoria, OR USA

(Courtesy of Five Zero Trees Astoria)

Just moments from the water, Five Zero Trees in Astoria serves up high-quality cannabis in a cozy storefront filled with reclaimed wood and meticulous displays. Fortunately, this welcoming dispensary is more than just its hip aesthetic—the staff at Five Zero Trees are known for their friendly, pleasant approach to helping everyone find the right cannabis.

Index: 78.24

What People Are Saying:

“We were absolutely blown away by the knowledgeable staff! We come from WA state, so we’ve encountered quite a few budtenders in our day, but these guys set the bar so high. The store was beautiful, but the staff is what makes this place the best in the west. We will definitely be returning.” —meganbowden

Depoe Bay, OR

(Courtsy of Hi Cascade Depoe Bay)

Hi Cascade’s Depoe Bay location is perfectly situated across from the water. Open daily from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., this neighborhood dispensary’s easygoing coastal vibes mingle perfectly with their huge selection of high-quality cannabis products. Leafly reviewers are quick to comment on their staff, who stay abreast of industry trends so that they can better pass that knowledge on to the patients and customers who stop by.

Index: 78.2

What People Are Saying:

“I love the location and I love the people working there Tim is very knowledgeable he is definitely done his studying I am an old hippie and thought I knew everything about marijuana he definitely knows a hell of a lot more than me I will always shop here and I have spread the word” —Victoriawildflower

Salem, OR USA

(Courtesy of Herbal Remedies South)

The staff at this South Salem dispensary are great at asking pointed questions to get to the bottom of what each patient and customer is looking for, whether they’re first-time visitors or seasoned regulars.

Index: 77.72

What People Are Saying:

“One of the best dispensaries I’ve ever been too! Everything from the products, prices, staff, and environment is on point! All the staff is bad ass but had the pleasure of workin with Michael and he was super knowledgeable and super friendly! Best of all, THEY DONT PRE PACKAGE!! With their quality it makes it that much better! 1000% my new go to place!” —realbshow

Springfield, OR USA

(Courtesy of Deep Roots Cannabis)

This Springfield dispensary has found the sweet spot with product rotation—those looking for something new will always find it, while those looking for tried-and-true strains will leave happy, too. Plus, once a month, Deep Roots hosts a dance party complete with a live band or DJ, food truck, and deep discounts on a range of quality cannabis products. Oh, and all of their prices include tax. What’s not to love?

Index: 76.8

What People Are Saying:

“This place is Awesome every time I visit the atmosphere is incredible people are really friendly I’m very helpful and that make it easy to make a decision because they have such a variety from Edibles, flower, dabs you name it they got it and it’s always been the best since I’ve been visiting dispensaries.” —Sntgray

4160 SW 109th Ave Beaverton, OR

(Courtesy of Growing ReLeaf)

Beaverton’s first dispensary is conveniently located down the street from Beaverton Town Center, near Home Depot and Target. Its high-quality cannabis combined with its mission to educate its patients and recreational consumers make this location stand out as a top option.

Index: 76.72

What People Are Saying:

“Super thrilled to have Growing ReLeaf on my radar now. Best price for Select cartridges across the metro area, even before my first time visit discount. I’ll be coming in weekly for carts now!” —katiethompson7

Warren, OR

(Courtesy of The Flower Shoppe St. Helens)

This bright and airy dispensary provides quality cannabis at affordable prices to the people of Columbia County. A variety of concentrates, flower, edibles, topicals, and more are served up by a crew of professional, welcoming staff who are great at making tailored recommendations to everyone who walks in. Plus, they have an adorable shop dog.

Index: 76.48

What People Are Saying:

“Convenient location right off the highway. Flower selection is great, there is always something new to try. I was excited to see the real Durban Poison this visit. Good work Flowershop!” —DylanToback

Portland, OR

Parlour Cannabis Shoppe Oregon Marijuana Dispensary — Leafly List Spring 2017(Courtesy of Parlour Cannabis Shoppe)

Rich wood tones and bright white subway tile serve as the foundation to Parlour’s comfortable-yet-trendy vibe, and while customers appreciate the beauty of the shop, they love their unique cannabis and product offerings even more.

Index: 74.64+

What People Are Saying:

“Most definitely one of the best shops on the west side. The budtenders are extremely helpful and not pretentious. Never had anything but a positive experience. Location is very convenient but also set back and discreet…if you care. The prices are very good, and the variety is consistently solid — lots of choices at every price point. Very comfortable in every way, no need to shop anywhere else!” —DJ22

1300 NW 9th St Corvallis, OR

(Courtesy of High Quality)

High Quality is a locally owned and operated dispensary in Corvallis. The budtenders are patients themselves who understand their patients’ needs and are eager to educate customers on the nuances of cannabis.

Index: 74.64+

What People Are Saying:

“I LOVE going into High Quality! All the employees are so friendly and knowledgeable, some have even taken initiative to get to know me, my personal cannabis preferences and even my hobbies. I’ve gone in a few times just to browse and learn more because everyone there is so friendly!” —RachaelM15

Previous Oregon Leafly List

The Leafly List in Other Regions

Lead image by BruceBlock/iStock

Don’t see your favorite dispensary on the list? Make sure you follow, rate, and review your favorite cannabis locations to let the world know where to find the best cannabis products, service, and atmosphere.

Want to see your business on the Leafly List?

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*The Winter 2017 Leafly List uses customer service metrics from the three months prior to its month of publication.

**Nectar – Salem (82.88) and Nectar – Eugene (80.32) withheld due to franchise limitations.

+Visit the Leafly List FAQ for tie-breaking procedures


Thanks you for visiting FLMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Florida. Currently, there is a Medical Marijuana Initiative on the November 2016 Ballot to legalize High-THC Medical Marijuana in the State of Florida. The FLMMCC Florida State Licensed Doctors are ready to review your medical records for a “FREE Pre-Qualification”. This will be the first step in becoming a legal Florida Medical Marijuana patient when the law passes.

Denver Shuts Down 26 Legal Cannabis Businesses, Makes Arrests

DENVER (AP) — Denver authorities shut down 26 legal marijuana businesses Thursday and arrested 12 people suspected of illegal distribution of cannabis after a yearlong criminal investigation.

Potential charges relate to marijuana sales exceeding limits set in state law, police said. Colorado allows people 21 and older to possess an ounce or less of marijuana under a measure approved by voters in 2012.

The city department that regulates marijuana businesses issued the order to close the businesses based on the police investigation, spokesman Dan Rowland said. It marked the first time the city has issued an open-ended suspension to any legal marijuana business since sales began in 2014, he said.

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Colorado has made a concerted effort to avoid a federal crackdown on its marijuana experiment, including police and government enforcement against illegal marijuana grows or sales.

Denver police didn’t name any federal agencies as partners in the investigation.

Gov. John Hickenlooper highlighted those efforts in an August letter to U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who requested information on marijuana legalization. Sessions has been a longtime opponent of state legalization and has suggested the federal government should crack down.

Special Agent Randy Ladd, a spokesman for the Denver division of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, said the agency wasn’t involved. Denver police didn’t name any federal agencies as partners in the investigation.

The city’s order shuttered 26 retail stores and other marijuana growing facilities operating under the name Sweet Leaf. But the police investigation focused on eight locations licensed by the company, and officers searched those addresses Thursday.

Police spokesman Sonny Jackson said he couldn’t provide more detail on the case because of the ongoing investigation. The department didn’t name the people arrested.

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Matthew Aiken, Christian Johnson and Anthony Suaro, three co-owners listed on the city’s order, didn’t immediately respond to email messages seeking comment. Company officials told Marijuana Business Magazine in April that they had 350 employees and $60 million in revenue.

Rowland said the businesses can’t sell or produce any cannabis products while the order is in place. The city plans to hold a public hearing within 30 days.

“This is a way for us to put a hold on things so we can figure out what’s going on,” he said.

Under Colorado law, marijuana businesses must get separate licenses for various purposes, even if they operate out of the same building. For example, a retail store licensed to sell recreational pot also needs a medical marijuana retail license to sell products designated for medical use.

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“One thing I always say about legalization is it didn’t end law enforcement,” said Sam Kamin, a University of Denver marijuana policy law professor. “If you’re going to have a system that works, people not complying with regulations need to be shut down.”

In Washington state, which also legalized recreational marijuana in 2012, no legal, regulated pot businesses have faced police raids. Some have, however, had their licenses suspended or revoked for failing to follow industry rules.

Sweet Leaf’s website lists one store in Oregon and 10 stores in Colorado. An employee who answered the phone at the Oregon store Thursday said they were open.

Oregon regulators weren’t immediately available to discuss the company’s status in that state.


Thanks you for visiting FLMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Florida. Currently, there is a Medical Marijuana Initiative on the November 2016 Ballot to legalize High-THC Medical Marijuana in the State of Florida. The FLMMCC Florida State Licensed Doctors are ready to review your medical records for a “FREE Pre-Qualification”. This will be the first step in becoming a legal Florida Medical Marijuana patient when the law passes.

Lab Owner to Resign Over Alleged Ties to White Supremacist Groups

The owner of an Oregon cannabis-testing lab said this week that she’s stepping down from the company she founded in 2013 following allegations from activists that she has ties to white supremacist groups.

Bethany Sherman, the CEO and managing member of OG Analytical, a state-licensed testing laboratory, said this week that she is not a neo-Nazi but will nevertheless remove herself from the company and sell it. In a statement sent Wednesday to Oregonian staff writer Noelle Crombie, who first reported the story, Sherman said her “only crime is a thought crime.”

(@OG_Bethany/Twitter)

“Knowing the political ramifications of my actions,” she wrote, “I did my best to keep them incredibly secret.”

According to allegations in an anonymous Nov. 23 blog post on the Eugene Antifa website, Sherman and her partner, Matthew M. Combs, who is listed on state records as a co-owner of OG Analytical, provided supplies to white supremacist groups, attended neo-Nazi gatherings, and spread bigoted political views on social media.

Sherman allegedly operated a Twitter account, “Mrs. Blackhat,” with the handle @14th_word. While the account is no longer active, the Antifa group has posted what it says is an archive of Sherman’s tweets, many of which promote so-called alt-right views.

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According to the Anti-Defamation League, the term “14 Words” refers to “the most popular white supremacist slogan in the world: ‘We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children.’” It was coined by a member of the white supremacist terrorist group known as The Order.

In her statement to The Oregonian, Sherman defended her pride in being white and said she struggled to find a community where she could unashamedly express it:

I find it extremely disconcerting that it is admired and revered to have “Gay Pride,” “Black Pride,” “Asian Pride,” or pride in any other cultural heritage, but if you have “White Pride,” it automatically makes you a Nazi, and you are ostracized, attacked, and lynched by your community. I admit, I am proud that I am white, and I’m not ashamed of my heritage. And I admit that I have been so conditioned to feel shame about this pride that I discreetly sought community where I could.

Sherman denied that she or her company “has in any way acted in a discriminatory fashion against anyone” and emphasized the good she said she’s done in the community.

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“Neither myself, nor my company, have ever, EVER practiced, preached, or recruited anyone to practice or preach hate or hateful rhetoric in ANY way,” she said.

“She doesn’t seem to get that those views are repugnant to most people.”

Rodger Voelker, OG Analytical lab director

The full statement is available on The Oregonian’s website.

At OG Analytical, meanwhile, the allegations have sparked a backlash. The company’s lab director, Rodger Voelker, told the Oregonian that Sherman came to the lab on Wednesday and “went off on us for not supporting her.”

“She doesn’t seem to get that those views are repugnant to most people,” he said.

Voelker added that the company’s image has taken a major hit since the allegations became public. “The brand is dead,” he said. “It’s over.”

But in an email to Leafly on Thursday afternoon, Sherman countered that claim. “All the media attention has acted as free advertising for the sale of my company,” she wrote. “I’ve already received four inquiries regarding the sale.”

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“It’s incredible how supported I feel right now,” she added. “For every every ugly bigot who throws crude, hateful remarks at me for my thoughts, I have two beautiful humans reaching out to remind me that I’m still recognized and respected for all the work I’ve done to propel the industry forward.”

Here’s Sherman’s full statement to Leafly:

It’s incredible how supported I feel right now. For every ugly bigot who throws crude, hateful remarks at me for my thoughts, I have two beautiful humans reaching out to remind me that I’m still recognized and respected for all the work I’ve done to propel the industry forward. I’ve received countless emails, text messages, and phone calls from dispensary owners, growers, distribution managers, Jews, Puerto Ricans, Hispanics, African Americans, Whites, Christians, and Pagans who have shared with me that I have only ever treated them with respect, that I’m a “beautiful woman,” that they are so sorry that me and my family are going through this, and to keep my chin up, among so many other positive messages. It has quickly become very clear to me who my true friends are: those who are not subject to mob mentality, who have the strength and professionalism to think for themselves and apply real world experience to their perception of the information they’ve been spoon fed from so many drama hungry media outlets. One friend told me so eloquently that we’re in a high energy period astrologically, and that it’s a good time to seek out new opportunities; to shed those that have been holding me back. This incident, despite being one of the most trying events of my life, is finally affording me the opportunity to pursue the life I’ve been longing for, and to weed out everything, and everyone who hasn’t been true to me and my higher purpose. Another silver lining: all the media attention has acted as free advertising for the sale of my company. I’ve already received four inquiries regarding the sale. For all of this, I’m incredibly grateful.

I am however, incredibly sad to see the pain each of my employees has experienced because of this event. I can only hope that each of them are receiving the same kind of support that I am.


Thanks you for visiting FLMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Florida. Currently, there is a Medical Marijuana Initiative on the November 2016 Ballot to legalize High-THC Medical Marijuana in the State of Florida. The FLMMCC Florida State Licensed Doctors are ready to review your medical records for a “FREE Pre-Qualification”. This will be the first step in becoming a legal Florida Medical Marijuana patient when the law passes.

Veterinarians Want Permission to Research Cannabis for Pets

BEND, Ore. (AP) — Dr. Byron Maas surveys a supply of marijuana products for dogs that lines a shelf in his veterinary clinic. They’re selling well.

“The ‘Up and Moving’ is for joints and for pain,” he explains. “The ‘Calm and Quiet’ is for real anxious dogs, to take away that anxiety.”

People anxious to relieve suffering in their pets are increasingly turning to oils and powders that contain CBDs, a non-psychoactive component of marijuana. But there’s little data on whether they work, or if they have harmful side effects. That’s because Washington has been standing in the way of clinical trials, veterinarians and researchers say. Now, a push is underway to have barriers removed, so both pets and people can benefit.

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Those barriers have had more than just a chilling effect.

When the federal Drug Enforcement Administration announced last year that even marijuana extracts with CBD and little or no THC — marijuana’s intoxicating component — are an illegal Schedule 1 drug, the University of Pennsylvania halted its clinical trials. Colorado State University is pushing ahead.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has warned companies that sell marijuana products online and via pet shops and animal hospitals that they’re violating laws by offering “unapproved new animal drugs.” The FDA threatened legal action.

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But, seeing potential benefits of CBDs, the American Veterinary Medical Association’s policy-making body said last summer it wants the DEA to declassify marijuana as a Schedule 1 drug “to facilitate research opportunities for veterinary and human medical uses.” It asked the board of the national veterinarians’ organization to investigate working with other stakeholders toward that goal. The board is awaiting a recommendation from two group councils.

“We lack the science to support use of medical marijuana products like CBD oils, not because researchers are unwilling to do the work, but because of bureaucratic red tape and over-regulation.”

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah)

“The concern our membership has is worry about people extrapolating their own dosages, looking to medicate their pets outside the realm of the medical professional,” Board Chairman Michael Whitehair said in a telephone interview. “This is an important reason for us to continue the research.”

Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch, a conservative Republican, became an unlikely champion of this push when he introduced a bill in September that would open the path for more clinical research. While Hatch said he opposes recreational marijuana use, he wants marijuana-based drugs, regulated by the FDA, produced for people with disorders.

“We lack the science to support use of medical marijuana products like CBD oils, not because researchers are unwilling to do the work, but because of bureaucratic red tape and over-regulation,” Hatch said.

Dawn Boothe, of Auburn University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, is waiting for federal approval to begin a study of marijuana’s effects on dogs with epilepsy. The classification of marijuana products containing CBD as a Schedule 1 drug, the same category as heroin and LSD, creates a “major, major, major, terrible roadblock” for researchers, Boothe said in a phone interview.

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Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine were studying CBDs’ effects on dogs with osteoarthritis and pruritis, or itchiness, until the DEA released its policy statement.

“The ambiguity in this process has really brought us to a screeching halt,” said Michael DiGregorio, director of the university’s clinical trials center. “It is research that needs to be done, because there are a lot of CBD products out there.”

When it clarified that marijuana CBD extracts are Schedule 1 drugs, the DEA said it was assigning a code number to those substances to better track them and to comply with international drug control treaties.

DiGregorio complained that researchers seeking federal approval to study CBD products are told to provide certain data, but that data isn’t normally available until the study is done.

“If you don’t have the data, you can’t get the registration to do the work,” he said.

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On a recent morning, Maas took a break from seeing four-legged patients in the Bend Veterinary Clinic. A stethoscope dangling from his neck over green scrubs, Maas said his clients have reported CBDs help relieve pain, arthritis, anxiety, loss of appetite, epilepsy and inflammation in their pets.

“Unfortunately there’s not a lot of research out there, especially on animals, on CBD compounds,” Maas said. “The research is really necessary to help us understand how to actually use these compounds on our pets.”

Veterinarian Janet Ladyga of the Blue Sky Veterinary Clinic, also in Bend, said she doesn’t recommend marijuana products because of the unknowns.

“We don’t have a lot of evidence right now, so we don’t know the toxicity or the safety profile … and we don’t have any good evidence to show either if it’s safe or efficacious,” she said.

The study at Colorado State University aims to provide some data. The roughly two dozen dogs in the arthritis study and the 30 in the epilepsy tests are given either CBD oil or a placebo. For the arthritis study, activity monitors are attached to the animals’ collars, to determine if they’re more mobile when they’re taking CBD.

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Principal investigator Stephanie McGrath said she hopes the results will be a stepping stone for longer and more diverse studies, and that they provide useful information for human medicine.

“Every medication we’re taking has been given to a dog first,” the University of Pennsylvania’s DiGregorio noted.

Meanwhile, Boothe said she had everything ready to start her study in January, and was waiting for a green light from federal officials.

“I don’t know what’s taking so long,” she said.


Thanks you for visiting FLMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Florida. Currently, there is a Medical Marijuana Initiative on the November 2016 Ballot to legalize High-THC Medical Marijuana in the State of Florida. The FLMMCC Florida State Licensed Doctors are ready to review your medical records for a “FREE Pre-Qualification”. This will be the first step in becoming a legal Florida Medical Marijuana patient when the law passes.

One Strain Five Ways: Sour Diesel in Oregon

Oregon’s richly varied cannabis industry gives us a smörgåsbord of exceptional Sour Diesel products to choose from. Below, meet a half-gram cartridge, winterized BHO, a strain-specific chocolate bar, a Sour Diesel tincture, and an organically grown gram.

Note: Prices may vary by retailer.

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(Courtesy of Winberry Farms)

This pure distillate cartridge is extracted from Clean Green certified sungrown flower, which means it was produced using organic fertilizers and natural growing methods. Made near Eugene in little Fall Creek, Oregon, the cart is also available in a 1g size.

Price: $28

Notes: 63.5% THC.

When to use it: A hit between work and happy hour.

(Courtesy of Alpine Extracts)

This butane hash oil by Hood River, Oregon-based Alpine Extracts is sold in a one-gram coin-shaped puck after being clarified and completely de-waxed. The winterization process used ensures that your concentrate won’t lose flavor or freshness on the shelf prior to your purchase.

Price: $45

Notes: Approximately 70% THC.

When to use it: A post-brunch dab to fight that weekend food coma.

(Courtesy of Peak Extracts)

Made in Portland from locally grown cannabis and 70% dark chocolate, these bars are gluten-free, vegan, and crafted with CO2-extracted cannabis oil. The extraction method intends to maintain Sour Diesel’s terpene and flavonoid profile, which most edibles aren’t able to do, and paired with rich chocolate, the fruity, earthy notes of Sour D are accentuated to great effect.

Price: $20

Notes: The 1.4-oz chocolate bar contains 50mg THC.

When to use it: Dessert after your 420-friendly dinner party.

(Courtesy of Butte Creek)

Grown in Southern Oregon’s Rogue Valley, this classic take on the classic strain brings on a clear-headed, high-energy set of effects that are perfect for outdoor activities, from hiking to biking to snowshoeing.

Price: $12.50

Notes: 17.8% THC; 0.77% CBD.

When to use it: On the trail.

(Courtesy of Cascadia Herbals)

This strain-specific tincture is extracted using a “terpene retention system” that allows Sour Diesel’s unique aromas, flavors, and effect profile to be maintained. Mixed with organic glycerin, cane alcohol, and soy lecithin, the resultant tincture becomes an effective means of swift sublingual delivery.

Price: $45

Notes: 200mg THC per 20ml bottle.

When to use it: For microdosed relief during the work day.


Thanks you for visiting FLMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Florida. Currently, there is a Medical Marijuana Initiative on the November 2016 Ballot to legalize High-THC Medical Marijuana in the State of Florida. The FLMMCC Florida State Licensed Doctors are ready to review your medical records for a “FREE Pre-Qualification”. This will be the first step in becoming a legal Florida Medical Marijuana patient when the law passes.