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Dispatches from public radio's correspondent at the Oregon Legislature. This is a venue for political and policy coverage of the state government in Salem and its impact on the people of Oregon.

New Oregon Marijuana Stores Slated To Open In 2016

Austin Jenkins
Northwest News Network
File photo. Legal, recreational marijuana will be available in Oregon as soon as October 1, but only from existing medical marijuana dispensaries.

The Oregon Legislature moved up the start of retail marijuana sales at existing dispensaries, but the state’s Liquor Control Commission is still writing rules for new stores.

Oregonians will be able to buy legal, recreational marijuana as soon as October 1, but only from existing dispensaries -- the ones that are currently selling medical marijuana. New recreational shops, like the ones in Washington and Colorado, are still a ways off.

“This is probably a lot of what it looked like when states began adopting liquor laws after the repeal of prohibition,” said Tom Towslee, the OLCC’s marijuana spokesperson.

He said retail stores won’t be able until to apply for a license until January 1. Then it will still be a few more months before stores get licenses and can open.

Still, Oregon dispensaries will make the state the fastest to get to market after legalization.