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Businesses Race To Open 1st Recreational Pot Stores

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Toni Fox talks with CBS4's Howard Nathan inside 3D Cannabis Center. (credit: CBS)

Toni Fox talks with CBS4′s Howard Nathan inside 3D Cannabis Center. (credit: CBS)

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DENVER (CBS4) – In nine days, the first legal recreation marijuana stores will open in Denver. This week word should come down about which stores are cleared to make the state’s first legal sales.

3D Cannabis Center owner Toni Fox has hundreds of marijuana plants in her building that are weeks away from cultivation.

She told CBS4 she is miles ahead of other would-be retail sellers because she has her certificate of occupancy, which she obtained in 2010 when the store opened as a medical marijuana dispensary.

She believes some other store owners hoping to sell retail marijuana are still waiting for their COD.

Before selling medical marijuana, Fox had a landscaping company. But with this new recreational industry she’s witnessed a learning curve for government.

“The fact that the regulatory agencies are creating this as we’re going along, we’re all trying,” Fox said.

After a handful of inspections to go through this week, she expects to collect her license to operate by Friday.

“A year ago, I would have said ‘I wish I wouldn’t have done it.’ Now I’m very excited that I’ve done it and I’m looking forward to the future,” she said.

Fox hopes that future is filled with cash.

“We’re looking at conservatively a quarter of a million the first three months of 2014,” she said. “I’m in personally — my family — over $1 million. I have a half a million in lines of credit that I’m hoping to pay off by the end of 2014.”

CBS4 was only able to find one other store approved for recreational marijuana sales in Denver.

“From your business background, how would you compare the process of now trying to open up this business — marijuana?” CBS4′s Howard Nathan asked Fox.

“Excruciatingly different,” she said.

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