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Colorado Announces Rules For Recreational Pot Sales

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DENVER (AP) – Detailed rules for how recreational pot in Colorado should be grown and sold next year were released Monday.

The state department that will regulate marijuana released more than 60 pages of rules for how marijuana sales will be licensed and regulated. The Colorado Legislature set broad parameters earlier this year, but many nitty-gritty rules were left to the Department of Revenue.

Pot has been legal since last year in Colorado, but retail sales don’t begin until next year. The voter-approved marijuana legalization measure adopted last year required the department to release rules by July 1. The rules released Monday don’t apply to medical pot shops.

The rules require labels to include potency, expiration dates and a disclaimer that pot isn’t legal outside Colorado and hasn’t been safety-tested.

Recreational pot will also come with the disclaimer that “there may be health risks associated with the consumption of this product.”

Marijuana labels won’t be allowed to make claims that the product brings any health benefit.

The rules also detail exact specifications for who can work in marijuana businesses and how the drug can be transported and stored.

The department’s rules indicate it plans to establish seed-to-sale tracking, making producers and sellers responsible for each plant destined for retail sale. The state’s current medical marijuana business is subject to the same rule, though the department hasn’t been able to adequately fund the seed-to-sale tracking. State officials believe that if voters approve steep pot taxes this fall — a 15 percent excise tax and a 15 percent sales tax — they’ll be able to properly monitor every pot plant.

Washington state, the only other state to authorize marijuana use without a doctor’s recommendation, is also finalizing draft rules for retail pot sales starting next year. Both states await word from the U.S. Department of Justice about how it plans to respond to the states’ defiance of federal drug law.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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