Cannabis Equity Act Logo HB 3112 

Repairing the Harm

As Oregon’s recreational cannabis market continues to see strong growth, the Oregon Cannabis Equity Act provides an opportunity for Oregon to pass the most comprehensive, holistic approach to cannabis equity in the United States. This Act focuses on widespread reinvestment in the communities that have been hurt most by cannabis prohibition and the War on Drugs.

Passage of the Oregon Cannabis Equity Act would focus cannabis tax dollars and other relevant funds into repairing damages done to Black and brown communities by providing business opportunities and support and meeting housing, education, and health care needs. The act also enacts free, automatic expungement of eligible cannabis crimes for everyone eliminating the hurdles that have kept 20,000+ Oregonians from expunging their cannabis record. Finally, the act creates more opportunity for Black and brown business ownership and employment in the growing cannabis industry.

Equity Licenses

Allows for the creation of an Equity License that will provide overdue institutional support to BIPOC Cannabis business owners. Provides expedited licensure process for equity applicants.

  • Allow for a variety of Equity Licenses across all OLCC license types
  • 2 new full-time employees at OLCC as dedicated support for equity licensees
  • Faster processing of equity licenses
  • License fee reduction
  • Provisional license without requirement of Land Use Compatibility Statement (real estate requirement)
  • On-premise consumption license for equity licensees only for 10 years
  • Capital and technical support to equity licensees to help address funding and resource inequities for Black-, Indigenous- and Latinx owned businesses.
  • Delivery license (expands current definition) for equity licensees only (10 years)
  • Qualified licensees requirements include ownership of 51% by Black-, Indigenous- or Latina/o/x OR convicted for cannabis offense + under income max

Cannabis Expungement

Requires free, automatic expungement of qualifying cannabis crimes by removing financial barriers and other impediments.

  • Free, automatic expungement
  • Allow use of cannabis tax equity funds to pay for “automatic” expungement via record research
  • Forgive fines and fees for people with unsatisfied judgements

Community Investment

Focuses existing cannabis tax dollars into direct investment in BIPOC owned businesses. Requires community reinvestment into areas and individuals most impacted by the over-arrest and incarceration due to cannabis crimes.

  • Invests existing cannabis tax dollars into Black-owned, Indigenous-owned, and Latinx-owned businesses
  • Fund programs dedicated to home and land ownership, job training, and wealth creation.
  • Directs existing OR Health Authority and state school fund cannabis tax dollars to mitigate Black, Indigenous, and Latinx community health and education inequities

Cannabis Equity Governing Board

  • Drives transparency and accountability of program by tracking use of funds
  • Works cross-functionally with agencies to achieve desired program outcomes
  • Assesses results of programs funded and has authority to take action to achieve better results
  • Has flexibility to direct funding and spend to programs and solutions that best meet community equity needs

The Cannabis Equity Fund

How Cannabis Dollars Can Repair the Harm

Impact of arrest and incarceration

  • Two in three families with one imprisoned family member can’t meet basic needs.
  • 67% of formerly incarcerated people are unemployed or underemployed five years after their release.
  • Prison time reduces wages up to 20% and the effect of incarceration on lowering wages is twice as great for Black and Latinx workers than for whites.
  • Less than one-third of formerly incarcerated people continue with education or training of any kind. The cost of tuition and inability to get educational loans because of criminal conviction are most cited barriers.
  • 79% of formerly incarcerated people were denied housing because of their or a family member’s conviction history.
    Source: Ella Baker Center, 2015, “who pays, the true cost of incarceration on families”
  • Black people own 2.7% of licensed cannabis businesses in the U.S. Black small business ownership across all industries is 9.4%. Latinx cannabis ownership is 6% vs 12% for all industries. [Marijuana Business Daily, 2017; Small Business Administration, 2019]
  • Latinx and Black people have less than 10% of the personal wealth whites have, which negatively impacts capital available for starting and running a business. Median household wealth for Black Americans, the community with the highest arrest rates for cannabis possession, is projected to hit zero by 2053.

    Source: Prosperity Now and Institute for Policy Studies, 2017

For more, read the Legislative Data Report, which gives compelling data showing why this program should directly name Black, Indigenous, and Latina/o/x communities, as well as people previously convicted of cannabis offenses who face economic hardship, as the recipients of equity licenses and the communities identified for economic investment via cannabis taxes.

How you can get involved

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SIGN THE PETITION

Sign this petition to urge the Oregon Legislature and Governor to pass and implement HB 3112, the Oregon Cannabis Equity Act.

Attend our Virtual Town Event

Join us at a town hall event about why we need to pass the Oregon Cannabis Equity Act and how you can get involved. Hosted by the Cannabis Equity PAC it will feature presentations by Oregon legislators, activists, and key organizers of the bill talking about what it does, what challenges it faces and how people can get involved. Please register today and join the effort behind this historic bill.

Cannabis Equity Now Event
Cannabis Equity PAC
P.O. Box 42307
Portland, OR 97242
info@cannabisequitypac.com

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