Staff CMM - Monday, October 01, 2012
Many medical marijuana dispensaries in Colorado work hard to provide a legitimate service to patients in Colorado, but as with anything, a few bad seeds tend to spoil what others are working so hard to achieve. Eleven people connected with The Silver Lizard dispensary in Denver were accused recently of illegally funneling the drug to other states for distribution. The eleven people face a 59-count indictment for charges of racketeering and marijuana distribution and if found guilty, the defendants face sentences ranging eight to 24 years. Colorado Attorney General John Suthers stated the defendants are accused of illegally distributing marijuana to 13 other states and Washington, D.C. In a recent statement, Suthers opposed Colorado’s medical marijuana laws. Suthers claimed that due to these laws, Colorado is becoming a major exporter of marijuana to the rest of the country.
Staff CMM - Wednesday, September 12, 2012
In a unanimous vote that lasted less than a minute, the Denver City Council has voted to ban all types of outdoor advertising for medical marijuana including billboards, posters, bus benches, windshield leaflets and sign twirlers. The Denver City Council also voted immediately afterwards to kill an alternate, more limited plan that would have blocked outdoor advertising within 1,000 feet of schools, parks and daycare facilities. The position of the Medical Marijuana Industry Group is that this will show good faith by businesses to fit into their communities. Businesses will still be allowed to advertise online, in newspapers and magazines and also at any charity events they sponsor. While the Cannabis Business Alliance is not happy with the vote outcome, they feel that clear rules have now been established that will enable them to move forward.
Staff CMM - Tuesday, August 14, 2012
As November nears, voters in Ft. Collins will most likely be asked to once again address the issue of medical marijuana dispensaries in the city. A pro-medical marijuana group in Ft. Collins has gathered nearly 9,000 signatures – approximately 4,786 more signatures than required, to place a measure on the November ballot asking that the ban on medical marijuana dispensaries be lifted. Last year, voters passed the ban by a 53 to 47% margin. One former dispensary owner feels this was not a true reflection of how the general population feels and believes that by placing the measure on the November ballot, the measure will stand a greater chance of success, since this is a Presidential voting year. Those opposed to medical marijuana dispensaries in Colorado believe that dispensaries contribute to the growing number of drug users among the city’s youth. Spokespeople for citizens against the dispensaries go on to say that it isn’t the dispensary itself they oppose as much as what it represents.
Staff CMM - Tuesday, July 24, 2012
The state of Colorado is preparing to lift a two-year dispensary moratorium July 1st and many dispensary owner hopefuls are chomping at the bit to begin the process of opening their own dispensary. With a market that is already completely over-saturated with medical marijuana dispensaries, these new hopefuls are in for quite a surprise. Although the moratorium will be lifted, many of the barriers will still remain. The cost of opening a business can be at least $100,000 or more and the regulatory requirements that go along with it are overwhelming. Coupled with the knowledge that marijuana is still an illegal substance according to federal law, this makes operation of a medical marijuana business even more risky. Despite the overwhelming odds, however, many are lining up to join the medical marijuana dispensary rush. With so many new hopefuls entering the market, this rush may create more problems with existing businesses who are already struggling to survive in an overly competitive business market.
Staff CMM - Tuesday, July 03, 2012
As the Presidential election draws nearer, candidates from various places are beginning to focus in on some of the more hot topics for debate, the most recent one being the medical marijuana industry and whether it should be regulated like alcohol. Libertarian Presidential nominee, Gary Johnson, visited a Denver dispensary recently to voice his support for Amendment 64 in Colorado. The proposed Amendment would allow people 21 years of age and over to possess limited amounts of marijuana and would also allow marijuana sales to be taxed as any other product. The biggest hitch that states such as Colorado are running into is that even though medical marijuana has been deemed legal under state laws, there are still federal laws to contend with. Under federal law, marijuana possession of any kind is illegal and though people may have limited protection by state law, they are not protected under federal law. Presidential nominee Johnson claims that if he is elected President, he would see to it that any medical marijuana businesses operating within local and state laws would not have to worry about being shut down by federal prosecutors.
Staff CMM - Tuesday, June 05, 2012
As the medical marijuana business in Colorado grows, it’s easy to assume that the price to buy an existing business will go up as well. However, it only takes one incident to cause the prices to plunge. Cannabis & Co., a Denver-based dispensary, was raided recently by local law officials and the owner was arrested as part of a sting operation. As a result, the dispensary was put up for sale at the low price of $129,000, which is less than half of the original listing price of $289,000. With such a low listing price, this dispensary has the potential to be a prime acquisition for an existing dispensary looking to expand. Many dispensary owners spent close to $100,000 just to comply with new state regulations. As the prices of dispensaries such as this one begin to drop, some fear this may signal a downturn in the overall medical marijuana market in Colorado, especially considering the recent action by the U.S. Attorney in shutting down many dispensaries in Boulder, Colorado. Supporters of medical marijuana in Colorado feel that these recent events may be enough to deter any would-be entrepreneurs from opening a medical marijuana business in Colorado in the near future.
Todd Davis - Wednesday, November 16, 2011
A common complaint by those opposed to medical marijuana in Colorado is perhaps the smell of marijuana in general. Most dispensary owners are aware of this problem and are instructed by law to provide a clear ventilation system that will filter out all smells of product cultivation outside of the establishment. However, what about outside the establishment? While Colorado law permits patients to use medical marijuana for a variety of physical ailments, it cannot thoroughly stop patients from using the product in public. There will always be festivals, gatherings, sit-ins and general get-togethers where those who simply want to smoke will do so regardless of others around them. This issue falls under the same area as cigarette smokers. While there will always be those who believe it is their right to enjoy their product regardless of where they are, there will also always be those who believe it infringes on their right to clear air to breathe, untainted by the smell of either marijuana or cigarette smoke.
Todd Davis - Thursday, November 03, 2011
Those business owners who had or were trying ar did open medical marijuana shops in the city of Fort Collins and Longmont, Colorado have been left out in the cold with the recent voting results. Both Longmont and Fort Collins has placed a ban on all medical marijuana related activity in their city and owners who had previously established businesses are being forced to move their location outside the city limits. This has many businesses owners frustrated about losing their client base. If these businesses are forced to relocate outside the city limits, dispensary owners fear that those clients who have debilitating conditions and are unable to travel will not be able to make the trip outside the city to purchase the supplies they need. Although several lawmakers sympathize with the situation dispensaries are facing, they admit that medical marijuana laws are currently operating in a very gray area and city officials are forced to comply with state and local regulations.
Todd Davis - Thursday, October 06, 2011
With the laws in Colorado regarding medical marijuana dispensaries changing more often than a traffic light at a busy intersection, dispensary owners are finding themselves in a constant state of stress trying to keep themselves in compliance with regulations. And with those changing laws comes an influx of business owners to state agencies looking to renew licensing and keep in compliance, while agency workers are finding themselves overwhelmed with requests. Many business owners, after waiting nearly six hours in line at the Department of Revenue’s Medical Marijuana Enforcement Division, found themselves leaving without a renewal. With so many business owners rushing to comply with state regulations before cutoff dates, the state is finding it difficult to keep up with the demand for renewals. In light of this struggle to keep in compliance, most state officials are being lenient when it comes to those trying to update equipment and renew licenses per the new laws. However, some business owners still remain concerned that with all the strict rules being put in place, it may all be in vain if tighter security keeps customers away.
Todd Davis - Tuesday, September 20, 2011
Some medical marijuana dispensaries in Boulder are finding keeping in constant compliance with the ever-changing medical marijuana laws in the state as well as in the city itself to be rather exhausting. For many dispensary owners, they find themselves running ragged trying to keep paperwork updated and keep themselves up-to-date on any recent changes in law when they feel that energy could be better spent operating their business and servicing their customers. And it’s not only the paperwork. Many owners are finding themselves becoming further and further in debt due to fees owed to the state for various compliance regulations. Some dispensary owners who operate million dollar businesses are finding it less and less likely that they will actually pull in a paycheck of their own due to fees owed. The tough part is that paying those fees will not guarantee these dispensaries will still obtain a license for the next year. However, those dispensaries who have established themselves in the city are determined not to let themselves be driven out by the changing laws and will continue to do all they can to make their businesses continue.