Andrew Buck and Hannah Hayes are busy with renovations at 868 Laneda Ave. at Highway 101 (the former Garlic Company location) that will soon open as Oregon Coast Cannabis.
By Laura Swanson
The Oregon Health Authority completed the required compliance check for the medical marijuana dispensary the week of July 27, so the remodeling can be completed and the final preparations can commence towards opening in early September.
The couple have enlisted local artisans to complete the look, are utilizing recycled materials, including old chalkboards from local grade schools and old growth cedar boards.
The City of Manzanita approved the business license for the dispensary, but now looks to restrict the sales of recreational marijuana that were granted by SB460.
Medical marijuana dispensary owners requested that the legislature approve limited sales of recreational marijuana products beginning on October 1.
The Manzanita City Council will hear the first reading of an ordinance to prohibit those sales within the city limits.
“This doesn’t affect the medical dispensary,” said Andrew Buck. “But it (the proposed ordinance) does affect our ability to sell to adults 21 and older provided by Senate Bill 460, the limited retail sales for recreational use starting October 1.”
The duo is facing the possibility of restrictions on the retail sale of marijuana for recreational use that was passed by voters (Measure 91) last year.
“The city of Manzanita has been cooperative with us regarding the business license, but this latest ordinance impacts our future business,” said Hannah Hayes. “It seems short-sighted. Dispensaries are going to be opening in Rockaway and Tillamook that will be able to sell to recreational users. By disallowing us to sell to recreational users as allowed by law starting in October, is not business friendly, and it’s not going to keep recreational marijuana out of Manzanita.”
Oregon Coast Cannabis will be proactive with outreach and education, from messages on receipts about the restrictions for use, to making sure products in the store are out of sight of minors.
When the dispensary opens to medical marijuana card-holders in late August, customers will enter a reception area that blocks from view the majority of the store.
Once identification has been verified, the customer will then be allowed access through a security door into the rest of the store.
“Oregon is doing a good job at looking at Colorado and Washington and getting it right,” said Buck. “It’s challenging to go from a black market, prohibition and moving into a legal product,” commented Hayes. “The OHA has been great, very helpful, providing a safe harbor to navigate from illegal to legal and transition through the process,” added Buck.
There are six main components to the regulations and OHA compliance, which include: 1. security and surveillance, 2. Packaging, 3. Labeling, 4. Policies and procedures, 5. All products must come from dedicated/approved lab, and 6. Safe/vault for storage – after hours all products are put into secure safe.
“I want to assure the community that we have several barriers to prevent theft,” said Buck. “It’s very unlikely to be targeted or nuisance to the community.”
Oregon Coast Cannabis is equipped with 15 security cameras, motion sensors, door sensors and glass break sensors. “We’ve had a couple incidences when someone rattled the door, and set off alarms,” commented Buck. “The system works.”
The packaging includes child proof vials and opaque child proof bags as well.
The regulations in place ensure consumers health and safety. The OHA has proactively sought new products, especially those infamous infused products, to limit designs to “blobs” and to not look like candy. Labeling will include information about different strains, effects and potency.
House Bill 3400 expanded upon the preliminary 35 pages of regulations with over 140 pages of requirements that include “seed-to-sale” barcode tracking on all marijuana products.
“This is an opportunity to educate the public and change perceptions about marijuana users,” said Buck. “We want to dispel the rumors, the stereotypes and the misconceptions.” He continued, “There are positive health and well-being benefits, and lots of misinformation. Marijuana has been demonized by some media, and it’s time for people to open their eyes to the positives. Just because people don’t like it or don’t understand it, doesn’t mean it’s bad for everyone.”
“It’s not going to happen overnight, but attitudes will evolve and shift over the next decade,” said Hayes. “Things are changing ….”
“It’s important for marijuana supporters to be respectful and nice to change those preconceived notions about pot,” said Buck. “Manzanita is a cool place with progressive people and we hope that the City Council will provide the opportunity for those that want it, to have access to marijuana as provide by Measure 91 and other legislation.”
The Manzanita City Council will have the first reading of the city ordinance to prohibit the sale of recreational marijuana at their August 5 meeting, and if approved, will have the second reading at their September 9 meeting.
“The city council seems to be a little out of touch with their constituents, given that over 60 percent of the voters in the area supported Measure 91,” said Hayes. “I’d hope that they would listen to the people, and put their personal opinions aside to allow recreational sales in October.”
For more information about the city ordinance and details about Oregon Coast Cannabis, reach Andrew Buck via email at [email protected].