DENVER (CBS4) – State lawmakers are discussing two bills on how recreational marijuana might be bought and sold in Colorado.
One bill would regulate recreational pot and the other addresses taxing the sales. Ironically, the measures were introduced in the House on the eve of the 4/20 pot festival. Thousands of people flooded Civic Center Park to champion the passage of Amendment 64 on Saturday.
Legislators took the recommendations given to them by the Amendment 64 Task Force and tweaked them accordingly. One bill would create a 15 percent sales tax on recreational pot and a 15 percent excise tax on pot transfers. The other creates a regulatory framework for retail marijuana.
House Bill 1317 would include:
- Converting the Medical Marijuana Enforcement Division to the “Marijuana Enforcement Division.”
- Giving medical marijuana dispensary owners a three-month head start to apply for retail licenses.
- Only allowing Colorado residents to own, manage or work in a retail marijuana business.
- Limiting out-of-state patrons from buying more than a quarter of an ounce at a time.
Rep. Dan Pabon, D-Denver, introduced the regulation bill. He says it’s about balancing what the voters wanted with public safety.
“It’s been a long process, it’s been bipartisan process. We have a lot of folks who looked at this issue and we just want to make sure we do this right,” Pabon said. “Colorado deserves to have a well-regulated market, protect the public safety, and make sure our children are safe.”
There is a third bill in the Senate which will address the bulk of the recommendations, including keeping pot out of the hands of children. That bill will be introduced early next week.