Planning and Zoning News
Potential Changes to Floodplain Regulations
On April 14, 2016 the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) issued a decision regarding how the federal Endangered Species Act is implemented in floodplains in Oregon. This decision affects how floodplain permits are implemented in Marion County.
For more information on the NOAA decision:
The decision by NOAA directs FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Administration) to change how floodplain development standards are implemented locally. Based on preliminary information provided by NOAA, federal law might only recognize work on an existing permit that has begun prior to September 15, 2016 and is completed prior to March 15, 2017.
It is possible that applications for fill in floodplains or development in floodways will not be able to be approved until the county adopts interim measures. The county intends to adopt these by September 15, 2016, or as required by FEMA, so that development can proceed as quickly as possible.
For more information, contact Brandon Reich, Marion County Planning, at (503) 566-4175 or
Recreational Marijuana Businesses and Medical Marijuana Dispensary Facilities
On Sept. 23, 2015, during regular Board Session, the Marion County Board of Commissioners passed an ordinance to opt out of the six marijuana businesses identified in House Bill 3400, essentially prohibiting marijuana businesses in the unincorporated areas of Marion County. The board also referred the matter to Marion County voters for the Nov. 8, 2016 general election. At the same public meeting the Board of Commissioners passed another ordinance establishing a 3% tax on the sale of recreational marijuana items and also referred this matter to Marion County voters at the Nov. 2016 general election.
As a result, and effective Sept. 23, 2015, there is a moratorium on the establishment of recreational-related marijuana businesses and establishment of new medical marijuana-related businesses in the unincorporated areas of Marion County until after the Nov. 8, 2016 election. The two existing and previously authorized dispensaries in Marion County are "grandfathered in" and can start recreational marijuana sales on Oct. 1, 2015, as allowed under state regulations.
For additional information, contact Joe Fennimore, Principal Planner, (503) 588-5038.