AS THIS WEEK'S PAPER hits the street, there's a strong chance recreational weed is being sold just across the Columbia River. Vancouver's first ever pot shop for folks who don't feel like lying about glaucoma (or actually suffering from glaucoma) was scheduled to open Wednesday, July 9, at 11 am.
It's called Main Street Marijuana and, as the Stranger's Charles Mudede reported recently, it's on the "high-end" section of Vancouver's Main Street—in a former jewelry store ("This whole place was built for a safe," says Chris Stipe, one of the store's managers.) The 'Couve's second recreational pot store, New Vansterdam, is scheduled to open its doors just two days later.
Sure, there won't be much of it at first—Washington's unwieldy rollout saw to that—and it'll be more expensive than the black market, but legal marijuana is just a frustrating car trip away. >p>"The business will be good for the economy," Stipe told Mudede the day before Main Street Marijuana opened. "There are already ten or so people working in a factory cleaning and packaging the pot. We are hiring people. We will attract tourists. In fact they are already coming. A guy from North Carolina came over thinking today is opening day. There will be more like him flying in."
(Obligatory reminder: Still illegal under Oregon and federal law.) DIRK VANDERHART
THE PORTLAND COP who stumbled while backing away from a homeless man with a crowbar last month, then shot the man in the chest, won't face criminal charges.
Multnomah County District Attorney Rod Underhill's announced July 2 that a grand jury decided the shooting death of 23-year-old Nicholas Glendon Davis "was justified under criminal law."
Davis was killed on the morning of June 12, after officers responded to a robbery call from a homeless man on the Springwater Corridor, the recreational trail that snakes from the Willamette River to the town of Boring.
According to police, Davis—the alleged aggressor in the conflict—pulled out a three-foot crowbar and began menacing Officer Robert Brown and another officer. Brown tripped and fell, and shot Davis in the chest when the man kept coming, police say. Exact details of the moments leading up to the shooting are still hazy, but it's likely Underhill's office will release transcripts of the grand jury hearing at some point. DVH
SHORT-TERM RENTALS—like the kind offered by popular online hosting service Airbnb—will soon be legal in Portland. But not for everyone. Not yet, at least.
After two lengthy debates, last month and then again July 2, the Portland City Council is expected to vote July 23 on new rules meant to give owners of single-family homes access to what's become a bustling online marketplace—provided those homeowners pay hotel taxes, spend three quarters of the year living in their homes, and submit to inspections.
A plan by Mayor Charlie Hales to open that market to Portland's apartment- and condo-dwellers, however, will have to wait. Hales suggested letting condo owners ask their homeowners' association presidents for permission, with apartment denizens doing the same with their landlords.
He pulled it at the end of the July 2 meeting after pushback and mild skepticism from City Commissioners Amanda Fritz, Nick Fish, and Steve Novick—with complaints arising over the process for devising those rules as much as their substance. Landlord lobbyists also said they aren't yet in favor of the change, pushed hard by Airbnb.
Hales said he'd try again in a few months after the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability does more work on the particulars. Fish, at the July meeting, was particularly struck by testimony from a landlord who said she'd convert apartments currently offered to working-class tenants into more lucrative short-term rentals if the city allowed it.
The city's already identified a relative dearth of affordable housing, for both low-income and middle-income earners, as one of its major challenges. DENIS C. THERIAULT