Portland City Council passes ban on public drug use, with one big caveat

The new ordinance will only take effect if Oregon law changes. Current state statues prohibit local governments from criminalizing public substance use.

PORTLAND, Ore. — After about two hours of public comment on Wednesday, Portland City Council voted unanimously to prohibit public drug use in the city, contingent on a change to state law. Alongside the ban, commissioners passed a resolution directing city officials to push for that state-level change.

Because the ordinance included a declaration of emergency, it did not require a second read and passed immediately.

“Just by virtue of illustrating how important this issue is, the last time I saw somebody

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