More of the details are now being reported in the Denver Post concerning recommendations from the Governor’s “Amendment 64 Implementation Task Force,” which is advising the legislature about how to regulate the production and distribution of marijuana for recreational use.
Among these are the following:
- For the first year, retail sales licenses should be restricted to current operators of medical marijuana centers.
- Both state and local approval should be required for new stores.
- Pot stores should be required to grow at least 70 percent of what they sell to customers and may not sell more than 30 percent of what they grow to other stores or producers.
- Advertising should be heavily restricted to exposure to minors.
- Marijuana should be contained in “child-proof packaging, regardless of whether such a requirement significantly increases retail prices.
- The amount of marijuana a consumer may buy in a single purchase should be capped at a level below the one-ounce limit that Amendment 64 puts on possession, perhaps as little as an eighth of an ounce for residents and visitors alike.
- Marijuana should be heavily taxed, with a 15 percent excise tax at the wholesale level and a special sales tax, as high as 25 percent – in addition to state and local sales taxes.
- The legislature should amend the state ban on smoking in bars and restaurants so that it specifically covers medical marijuana as well.
- Home cultivation, specifically authorized by Amendment 64, should be kept indoors; outdoor gardens would not be legal, even if surrounded by fences.
- The exception for “transfers” of less than one ounce marijuana “without remuneration” would not apply to transfers in exchange for “donations.”
- Pot smoking in businesses would continue to be banned under the clean air act. This would include a ban on smoking in marijuana stores, bars, restaurants and clubs.
- Employers could still have their own regulations concerning use of pot outside the workplace, including the right to terminate any employee who tests positive in random screenings.
Interestingly enough, the issue concerning what constitutes “private versus public” consumption of marijuana was so contentious that the committee was unable to take a position.
If you want more information regarding Colorado’s new marijuana laws, visit Denver DUI attorney Jay Tiftickjian’s blog.