By: Kristin Stankiewicz
Yesterday, March 23, 2020, Oregon Governor, Kate Brown, issued Executive Order 20-12, entitled: “Stay Home, Save Lives,” with the purpose of slowing the spread of COVID-19. The Executive Order (EO) is effective immediately and remains in effect until terminated by the Governor. The EO requires certain businesses to close, mandates social distancing at certain public and private facilities, and imposes requirements for outdoor areas and childcare facilities. The businesses that are required to close are listed in section 2 of the EO. The EO also gives the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) the authority to determine, with approval from the Governor, whether additional business closures are necessary.
Importantly for our industry, cannabis retailers and other licensed cannabis businesses are not ordered to close.  However, the EO requires any business that remains open, during the duration of this EO, to designate an employee or officer who will “establish, implement, and enforce social distancing policies, consistent with guidance from the Oregon Health Authority (OHA).” If businesses do not comply with this order to enforce social distancing guidelines, they will be closed until they can demonstrate compliance.
In addition, all Oregon businesses with offices in Oregon shall facilitate telework and work-at-home by employees, to the maximum extent possible. If you are an OLCC-licensed business that has offices in Oregon with employees that can do their work remotely, you must allow your employees to work from home. The EO states: “Work in offices is prohibited whenever telework and work-at-home options are available.” If telework and work-at-home options are not possible, your business must designate an employee or officer to enforce OHA social distancing guidelines. The policy must address both employees and business-critical visitors.
In short, all cannabis businesses must follow the OHA’s social distancing guidance. At the time of the writing of this blog, the OHA has not issued specific guidance to implement this EO. However previous OHA guidance has addressed social distancing and defined it as follows:
Social distancing: Remaining out of congregate settings, avoiding mass gatherings, and maintaining distance (approximately 6 feet) from others to the greatest extent possible. When remaining 6 feet from others is not practical (e.g. buying something at the grocery store), individuals should try to maintain a minimum distance of 3 feet. Social distancing measures reduce opportunities for person-to-person virus transmission and can help slow the spread of the disease, as well as save lives.
Additional OHA guidance can be found on the OHA COVID-19 website, including the OHA’s Guidance for Employers and this Infographic on Social Distancing. Please check the OHA’s website regularly for COVID-19 updates, including guidance implementing this EO. The US Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)’s Guidance on Preparing the Workplaces for COVID-19 may also be instructive.
The OLCC has also made some temporary changes to assist OLCC-licensed retailers in complying with social distancing guidelines. A fact-sheet addressing this temporary rule change can be found on the OLCC’s website here. OLCC-licensed retailers may now offer curbside/on-site delivery within 150 feet of its licensed premises. The OLCC recommends that the on-site delivery sales take place within areas of camera coverage. The temporary rule treats on-site delivery similarly to home delivery and requires the following (excerpted from OLCC temporary rule document):
When taking an order for marijuana products, over the phone, email, website, app, or in person, the order must contain, at minimum, the following:
- Requestor’s name and date of birth;
- The date delivery is requested; and
- A document that describes the marijuana items proposed for delivery and the amounts.
Enter the on-site delivery into CTS or your point of sale system the same way you would enter a regular in store sale. An on-site delivery does not require a printed manifest.
When the order is brought outside to the individual, you must check the purchaser’s ID to verify the person is over 21 (or over 18 if an OMMP cardholder) and is the person who made the order. NO exceptions.
The temporary rule increases the amount of flower that OMMP cardholders and caregivers can purchase to 24 ounces per day. The limit of 32 ounces per month per cardholder or caregiver is not changed.
The Portland office of Greenspoon Marder is available to help you stay compliant with OHA and OLCC requirements during this unprecedented time. Please do not hesitate to get in touch.
Be safe and be well!
 On the other hand, social and private clubs are ordered to close. If you are an owner of a private cannabis club, you are required to close.
 The EO exempts grocery, health care, medical, and pharmacy services from these requirements but still encourages social distancing protocols at these establishments. While OLCC-licensed cannabis retailers do a portion of their sales to medical cannabis patients, I do not believe that this makes them exempt from the requirements of this order. Social distancing within cannabis retail stores and other licensed cannabis workplaces should be considered a requirement until further notice.