People have been complaining about Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC) marijuana licensing bottlenecks for a long time. And rightfully so. New license applications are effectively suspended (and have been for over two years), while delays in approval requests for investment intake, ownership changes and business sales make these standard business activities extremely challenging in many cases. We have seen reasonable and diligent operators face agonizing decisions in this period, including whether to comply with rules and fail, or buck them and hopefully stay in business. Something had to give.
This month, we expect OLCC to release temporary rules and associated protocols that will radically upend the structure of the license application process (seemingly for the better!). We expect the rules to take immediate effect, either on October 15 when they are rolled out at the next agency meeting, or sometime between then and November 1. At that point, OLCC is likely to convene a rules advisory committee to consider the rules and any potential revisions as a part of permanent rulemaking.
Before all of that, application forms will likely be revised toward simplicity, and we anticipate a serious agency thrust to expedite change-in-ownership applications. The agency wants to get