By Eric Gorski The Denver Post
Sunday, April 20, 2014 – 5:39 p.m.
People smoke pot as the clock strikes 4:20 during the 420 Rally at Civic Center Park in Denver, Colorado on April 20, 2014. ( Seth McConnell, The Denver Post )
In the vast outdoor weed fair that is part of the High Times Cannabis Cup, Cat Jordan of Colorado Springs walks among the stalls, cradling her new water pipe.
The pipe has a pink bowl piece and an illustration of a dragon. It set her back $20, “a good price,” she says. Jordan, a 22-year-old waitress, is among friends — thousands of them.
“It’s just nice to see for yourself how many of us smoke,” Jordan said, techno music blaring and the sun beating down midday Sunday. “It’s obviously important to a lot of people’s lives.”
That much was obvious at the sold-out event at the Denver Merchandise Mart, which featured as the main draw an outdoor expo in the parking lot where marijuana companies offered samples to anyone 21 or over, or those 18 and over carrying valid Colorado medical marijuana cards.
“We’re just trying to make everyone happy,” said Ryan Luck, an assistant manager at the Medicine Man in Denver, which was handing out hits from marijuana strains it had entered in the competition that gives the event its name. “People are looking out for each other. It’s a community. We’re trying to keep it positive.”
Women in purple wigs handed out purple kush. Stalls sold “Legalized It” T-shirt in the color scheme of the Colorado flag. Vape pens — a method for consuming marijuana without smoking it — were as prevalent as cell phones.
The tremendous amount of marijuana being consumed begged the question: How much is too much? Jordan said as a general rule, she slows down when she starts to get very tired.
She said she had sampled about 10 dabs, a concentrated form of marijuana that is extremely potent. She “got excited” and tried too much early, then slowed down, she said. Marijuana, she said, helps with her anxiety and is safer than prescription drugs.
If those in attendance did overindulge, four ambulances sat parked on a side street just outside the southwest exit.
Estimated 125,000 turn out for two-day 4/20 rally in Civic Center
High Times Cannabis Cup Truely is the trade show for an industry.
Billy Rahn- 03/03/2015 (As Seen on Leafly)
Yesterday, Rep. David Simpson (R-Longview) filed a bill that would bring an end to cannabis prohibition in Texas by striking all references to marijuana in the state’s statutes. The bill, which would regulate marijuana “like tomatoes, jalapeños, or coffee,” resonates with Republican ideals of minimal government and personal responsibility, and was appropriately introduced on Texas Independence Day. The bill could go into effect as soon as September 1, 2015.
“Current marijuana policies are not based on science or sound evidence, but rather misinformation and fear,” Rep. Simpson said. “All that God created is good, including marijuana.”
Yep, Simpson’s anti-prohibition alignment stems partly from his religious beliefs, a perspective published yesterday in an article titled “The Christian case for drug law reform.” Here, Simpson questions the moral basis of cannabis prohibition, demonstrating a capacity for compassion and humanitarianism rarely seen among politicians in the marijuana debate.
“Let’s allow the plant to be utilized for good—helping people with seizures, treating warriors with PTSD, producing fiber and other products—or simply for beauty and enjoyment,” Simpson said. “Government prohibition should be for violent actions that harm your neighbor—not of the possession, cultivation, and responsible use of plants.”
Marijuana’s D.C. landslide
In November, 70 percent of voters approved Initiative 71 to legalize marijuana. It takes effect Thursday, Feb. 26. The initiative passed in every precinct except one, where it failed by only nine votes. (Washington Post, By John Woodrow Cox February 28 at 2:05 PM)
There are now 4 states which have legalized recreational marijuana, double the amount of states that had it just 2 days ago. Washington DC has also legalized marijuana recreationally, but may face tough resistance in the US Congress. Washington DC’s law is not absolute until it is approved by the US Senate, which now is a vast majority of Republicans, so this one is still up in the air.
By Noelle Crombie
Uruguay is hailed by marijuana advocates as a leader in pot policy, but a close look at details shows President Jose Mujica’s plan is more restrictive than Colorado’s approach to legal marijuana, AP reports.
Associated Press reporter Leonardo Haberkorn takes a look at the rules for marijuana sales in Uruguay. The rules go into effect Tuesday. Marijuana, under the new system, is expected to sell for less than a $1 a gram.
The state will sell five different strains, containing a maximum level of 15 percent THC, the substance that gets consumers high. Each bag will be bar-coded, radio-frequency tagged, and registered in a genetic database that will enable authorities to trace its origin and determine its legality, Canepa said. The rules limit licensed growers to six plants per household — not per person, as some pot enthusiasts had hoped. And while people who buy in pharmacies will be identified by fingerprint readers to preserve their anonymity, every user’s pot consumption will be tracked in a government database.
Mujica predicted that many will call him an elderly reactionary once they see this fine print, but he says his government never intended to create a mecca for marijuana lovers.
“No addiction is good,” he said. “We aren’t going to promote smokefests, bohemianism, all this stuff they try to pass off as innocuous when it isn’t. They’ll label us elderly reactionaries. But this isn’t a policy that seeks to expand marijuana consumption. What it aims to do is keep it all within reason, and not allow it to become an illness.”
by Kristen Wyatt (AP)
Colorado lawmakers approved the world’s first financial system for the marijuana industry Wednesday, a network of uninsured cooperatives designed to give pot businesses a way to access basic banking services.
The plan seeks to move the marijuana industry away from its cash-only roots. Banks routinely reject pot businesses for even basic services such as checking accounts because they fear running afoul of federal law, which considers marijuana and its proceeds illegal.
The result: Pot shop owners deal in large amounts of cash, which makes them targets for criminals. Or they try to find ways around the problem, like drenching their proceeds in air freshener to remove the stink of marijuana and try to fool traditional banks into accepting their money.
“This is our main problem: Financial services for marijuana businesses,” said Sen. David Balmer, R-Centennial. “We are trying to improvise and come up with something in Colorado to give marijuana business some opportunity, so they do not have to store large amounts of cash.”
Colorado became the first state to allow recreational pot sales, which started Jan. 1. Washington state will follow suit, with retail sales expect to start in July.
The U.S. Treasury Department said in February that banks could serve the marijuana industry under certain conditions. With the industry emerging from the underground, states want to track marijuana sales and collect taxes. It’s a lot easier to do that when the businesses have bank accounts.
But most banks have shrugged at the Treasury guidelines, calling them too onerous to accept marijuana-related clients. The result is a marijuana industry that still relies largely on cash, a safety risk for operators and a concern for Colorado’s pot regulators.
“This is not something that we can wait for any further,” said another banking sponsor, Rep. Jonathan Singer, D-Longmont.
The bill approved Wednesday would allow marijuana businesses to pool money in cooperative s, but the co-ops would on take effect if the U.S. Federal Reserve agrees to allow them to do things like accept credit cards or checks.
Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper supports the pot bank plan and is expected to sign it into law, though a spokesman said Wednesday the governor had yet to review the final language.
Lawmakers from both parties supported the banking co-ops as a way to properly audit marijuana shops and to make sure they’re paying all their taxes. Dispensary owners came to the Capitol this session to tell of their difficulties paying taxes and utilities in cash and the dangers of dealing in cash.
“It is very easy to see somebody get killed over this issue,” Marijuana Industry Group Director Michael Elliott testified last month.
The plan had bipartisan support, though some Republicans said that the effort won’t pass federal muster.
A few banks are accepting marijuana clients in light of the federal regulations.
Numerica Credit Union in eastern Washington state is accepting limited business from marijuana growers and processors, The Spokesman-Review reported Wednesday.
Colorado pot shop owners say a small number of credit unions will do business with them, too, though no banks or credit unions have said so publicly.
Countries that don’t ban marijuana don’t have banking systems unique to the drug.
This is the true essence of entrepreneurship! If there is marijuana4sale, bring cookies.
Either way, recreational marijuana wins in this match up! It seems like a trend for the future.
Marijuana Retailers opened for business on New Year’s Day in Denver, Colorado. 14 stores were granted the $5000/year license. Timothy Cullen, one of the first Marijuana Retailers, applied for his license on October 23, 2013. His license number, 402R-00078, was granted to Evergreen Apothecary LLC located at 1568 S. Broadway, Denver, Co. One store, Medicine Man, is now open for business and recently hired 25 new employees. They expect sales to at least double this year. One of the popular strains of marijuana for sale at $280/ounce is “San Fernando Valley OG Kush”. Medicine Man grows all their own marijuana and is required to attach a RFID (Radio Frequency I.D.) tag to each plant as a means of inventory control.
Due to legal landscape changes and the legalization of Marijuana for Recreational use and Retail sale, Marijuana4sale.com has decided to relocate its headquarters to Denver, Colorado. These changes are effective January 1, 2014.
Silk Road Founder may have been close colleagues with the shadowy Bit Coin founder
Major Raids in Denver and Boulder Disrupt Business as Usual
I guess we need a ton of jail cells.
NFL Players are always in pain and have tons of money. What do we expect from these guys. Just don’t drive the car while doing it or you get a DUI.
The former Website SilkRoad.com was seized by the Feds this past week. A move I personally applaud. Follow the laws people. Go to Colorado or Washington to have fun.
There could be a Landslide of states to follow Colorado and Washington
Drug dealing website shuttered.
Saturday, May 19, 2012
Cypress Hill played an amazing set on a side stage at Rock on the Range in Columbus, Ohio. Rock on the Range has been billed this year as the largest Rock Festival in America, with 44 bands and 3 stages. A Rap band, Cypress Hill stood out as true professionals at the exclusively “hard rock” concert. Midway through the set, front man B-Real lit up a joint and smoked the entire thing on stage. We definitely support his efforts to promote legalization! As the only non-Rock band at the festival, Cypress Hill’s performance was certainly a breath of fresh air amidst all the hard rock angst.
Colorado’s main medical-marijuana lobby is pushing Denver’s City Council to ban outdoor advertising, such as billboards and sign-flippers, for such businesses across the city in an effort to further legitimize the industry.
“We see this as a necessary step to clean up the industry,” said Michael Elliott of the Medical Marijuana Industry Group, a trade association representing more than 50 businesses. “The justification for a complete ban of outdoor advertising (for medical marijuana) is to prevent the encouragement of nonqualifying patients to use” the product.
The council is considering a bill to outlaw outdoor advertising for medical-marijuana centers 1,000 feet from schools, day-care centers, parks and recreation centers. But council members may look at a citywide ban instead.
“I was trying to look at doing something that was reasonable and something that I knew could withstand a court challenge and was focused on the kids,” said Councilwoman Debbie Ortega, who is sponsoring the legislation.
Ortega asked the medical-marijuana groups to come together on a citywide ordinance.
“Are you willing to support this and move forward?” she asked the groups gathered at a council committee meeting Wednesday. “If you all could get on the same page, I would be more than willing to work with you on a citywide ban.”
Ortega has crafted the ordinance from the federal tobacco-advertising laws. The ordinance’s purpose, she said, would be to reduce use and possession by minors.
Norton Arbelaez, a board member of the Medical Marijuana Industry Group, said medical-marijuana advertising is not protected free speech under the First Amendment because the product is illegal under federal law.
“In order to qualify for the protection of free speech, you have to say something legal,” he said. “This is a substance that is against federal law. Because its status is illegal; it doesn’t qualify for First Amendment protections under federal law.”
Denver Assistant City Attorney David Broadwell said he was surprised that Arbelaez is basing his argument on the fact that marijuana is illegal under federal law.
Arbelaez reviewed laws in other states and cities. Vermont and Montana, for example, prohibit any medical-marijuana advertising. In San Francisco, advertising requires a disclaimer, saying medical marijuana can be used only for medical purposes. Boulder prohibits advertising that promotes medical marijuana for recreational use.
Arbelaez said 89,646 patients, about 1.75 percent of Colorado’s population, are on the registry to obtain medical marijuana. Nearly 14,000 of those patients live in Denver. He said since cannabis is legal for such a small percentage of people, it doesn’t make sense to advertise to the general population.
He showed a photo of a sign-spinner spotted Wednesday morning at West 44th Avenue and Lowell Boulevard, saying that kind of advertising hurts the legitimacy of the business.
Shawn Coleman, director of the Cannabis Business Alliance, said he is in favor of banning the advertising around schools but not citywide. He said such a ban would be a slippery slope that could endanger the entire industry.
“People might say if you can’t advertise your business, you shouldn’t have them at all,” he said.
One dispensary owner said outdoor advertising is necessary because competition is so tough these days.
“Every day, it is difficult to get people in my doors when there are as many dispensaries as Starbucks in this city,” said Toni Fox, owner of 3-D Denver’s Discreet Dispensary at Interstate 70 and Brighton Boulevard.
Last summer, she employed a sign-spinner for about a month but decided it wasn’t worth the cost. She now places signs near the street.
“Are they going to ban sign spinning for all the other businesses that do it?” she asked. “I come into work every day, and I see sign-spinners for computer repair, cellphone shops.”
Jeremy P. Meyer: 303-954-1367 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Colorado Senate defeats driving-while-high bill; key backer was absent
POSTED: 05/16/2012 01:00:00 AM MDT
UPDATED: 05/16/2012 02:42:34 AM MDTBy John Ingold
The Denver Post
A bill making it easier for prosecutors in Colorado to convict people of driving high on marijuana died in the state Senate special session Tuesday because one key supporter was absent.
After the Senate voted down the bill on an informal vote, an effort to revive it failed on a 17-17 split. The missing vote was that of Sen. Nancy Spence, a Centennial Republican who was the deciding vote on a nearly identical bill in the legislature’s regular session.
Reached by phone, Spence said she was in San Diego, where she had plans to celebrate her grandson’s birthday that were made well before the special session was called. Spence said she was prepared to fly back to Denver on short notice to vote for the bill but that she didn’t know the bill would be brought before the full Senate on Tuesday.
“I’m really sad about it,” Spence said. “I feel terrible for (bill sponsor) Steve King, who worked so hard to get that bill passed.”
The result was surprising for a bill that, again, appeared headed for passage before being tripped up late. Earlier in the day, the Senate State, Veterans and Military Affairs Committee passed the bill 4-1. That came after the bill received its final approval in the House Tuesday morning.
That meant the bill needed to pass only two votes — one Tuesday and one today — by the full Senate to head to the governor’s desk. Gov. John Hickenlooper has said he supports the bill.
The bill, HB12S-1005, would make it a crime to drive with more than a certain amount of THC — the psychoactive chemical in marijuana — in your blood. A nearly identical proposal appeared headed for passage during this year’s regular legislative session. But it became entangled last week in the end-of-session fight over civil unions and died on the calendar.
Spence said she received a text message this morning from Senate Minority Leader Bill Cadman, R-Colorado Springs, asking her how soon she could return to Colorado. Spence said she asked how soon she was needed but that she didn’t know the Senate would be taking up the bill today until she turned on her laptop to watch the Senate session remotely.
“I assumed it wouldn’t be brought up until tomorrow morning,” Spence said.
“I’m just so, so sorry and so disappointed,” she added.
Cadman said he wasn’t sure Spence’s presence would have made a difference, saying that several lawmakers were keeping quiet about their vote and might have switched against the bill had Spence been there.
“That’s how close and, I think, complicated this issue became,” Cadman, who voted for the bill, said.
Reviewing the vote shows lawmakers voted today exactly as they had during the regular session.
Senate President Brandon Shaffer, a Longmont Democrat who also supported the bill, said lawmakers didn’t play games with the bill schedule. Because every day in a special session costs the state more than $23,000, Shaffer said legislative leadership wanted to keep the session to three days. That meant the bill had to be heard today in order to pass.
“We weren’t trying to pull a fast one,” Shaffer said.
Shaffer said Spence didn’t ask for permission to miss the vote. She was listed as absent for the vote, contrary to the usual courtesy of listing lawmakers who have to miss votes as excused.
“I was very disappointed with the outcome of today’s vote,” Shaffer said.
At the earlier committee hearing, medical-marijuana activists argue that the proposed limit — 5 nanograms of THC per milliliter of blood — is too low and would result in near-certain convictions for sober drivers.
The bill’s opponents argued that medical-marijuana patients have no way of determining what 5 nanograms means. How much can they consume? How long do they have to wait afterward?
“There needs to be a way to know whether a medical patient has the 5 nanograms in their system so they can know whether they can get behind the wheel,” said Debbie Olander, a representative from the United Food and Commercial Workers union. “With alcohol you can.”
Supporters of the bill counter that the vast majority of people would be impaired at 5 nanograms and would need to wait only about two to three hours after using to fall below the limit. They argue that, even though some people could be sober at 5 nanograms, it is important to send a strong message.
“The law works best when there are clear, effective, enforceable standards,” Boulder District Attorney Stan Garnett said, testifying in support of the bill.
The regular-session version of the bill passed the full Senate by a single vote.