DENVER (CBS4)– State lawmakers are considering new restrictions for marijuana products to help consumers know exactly what they are buying.
Amendment 64 legalized the possession or use of one ounce of marijuana. State Representative Jonathan Singer said most people may not know that not all ounces are created equal.
“A lot of people think an ounce is an ounce is an ounce and that’s really not the case,” said Singer.
This week a college student from Wyoming was killed after he jumped off a hotel balcony in Denver.
An autopsy report lists marijuana intoxication as a “significant contributing factor” in the death of 19-year-old Levy Thamba Pongi, a native of the Republic of Congo who fell from a motel balcony on March 11.
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Lawmakers are taking that tragedy very seriously. Many believe it’s another example of why there should be more safeguards in place because people don’t know have any idea what they’re eating or just how potent it can be.
Marijuana concentrate can be up to 10 times more potent than the same amount of marijuana flower. An ounce of concentrate- which is used to create edibles- goes a long way.
Rep. Singer is introducing legislation to ask the State of Colorado to take a closer look, “To just make some rules around that to just make sure that we have a good equivalency between what’s in a flower and what’s in a concentrate so people know exactly what they’re getting.”
A second bill would regulate the way all edible marijuana products look, like brownies, cookies and lollipops, so there is no question what they are.
“There’s no clear way to really tell the difference between what’s a marijuana cookie and what’s a Duncan Hines cookie,” said Singer.
“We’re moving from a system of prohibition to this new world and it’s just crucial that adults understand what they’re buying. A marijuana joint is very different from a marijuana brownie,” said marijuana attorney and activist Brian Vicente.
Joe Hodas of Dixie Elixers and Edibles said he supports stringent regulations. But he has some concerns that include compliance, enforcement and the effectiveness of the legislation.
“What can we do as an industry and as concerned citizens to come together and say what’s a great solution versus continuing to rush into legislation that may or may not resolve the challenges that people feel they are faced with,” said Hodas.
The two bills will be introduced together, probably early next week. If those proposals pass they would not go into effect until 2016.