By Tom Mustin

DENVER (CBS4) – A bill designed to protect children from marijuana edibles has led to some heated exchanges at the state Capitol.

“Representative (Dan) Pabon, when you got your DUI, was it fruit flavored? What were you drinking? This is the thing … where is it going to stop?”, said Libertarian Party member Michael Pickens.

House Bill 1436 prevents the making of marijuana edibles that can be confused with candy — specifically products in the form of a humans, animals, or fruit.

(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

On Tuesday the bill passed a House committee by a 10-2 vote, but not before opponents like Pickens blamed parents for any edible issues.

“Where do you get the right to tell companies they have to retool millions of dollars’ worth of equipment because parents aren’t being responsible?” Pickens said.

RELATED STORIES: Marijuana Legalization Story Archive

In recent years 19 children have gone to the emergency room after eating edibles. Medical experts say candy-like packaging is an accident waiting to happen.

“Children are more likely to consume products that resemble familiar foods,” said Dr. Larry Wolk.

Manufacturer Dave Maggio told CBS4’s Tom Mustin the new regulation will be costly to his business.

Marijuana edibles (credit: CBS)

Marijuana edibles (credit: CBS)

“Being in the industry we have to play along,” Maggio said.

How expensive will this be for you?” asked Mustin.

“One hundred, two hundred thousand,” Maggio replied.

A new amendment will allow geometric edible shapes.

Gina Carbone with Smart Colorado supports the bill but says it doesn’t go far enough.

(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

“No matter what shape these colorful candy chewy gummy items come in, we do think they are attractive to children and are problematic,” Carbone said.

The bill will now head to the House floor for a second reading.

LINK: House Bill 1436

Tom Mustin is CBS4’s Weekend Anchor. He has been with CBS4 since 2002, and is always looking for great story ideas. Connect with Tom on Facebook or follow him on Twitter @TomCBS4.

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