Tag: Amendment 64
Bump and Update: It's official. The House approved the Senate Amendments and Colorado is now the first state in the nation to pass laws regulating recreational use, sale, production and taxing of marijuana.
This appears to be the final version of House Bill 1317 setting out the regulations for retail outlets. Tourists will be able to buy 1/4 ounce at a time. You can find all the versions here. The bill will go to Governor Hickenlooper who is expected to sign it into law.
Details on the driving while stoned bill that passed yesterday here.
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The task force designated by Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper to make recommendations for the implementation of Amendment 64, legalizing marijuana in Colorado, has concluded its work and issued this 165 page report.
Included in the report are 58 recommendations,
....on everything from how recreational marijuana stores should be regulated to whether people should be able to smoke pot in bars.
The report will be considered by a joint legislative committee (not a pun, that's the terminology used to reflect it will include both House and Senate members.) The committee will meet twice in March.
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Attorney General Eric Holder will testify this morning at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on DOJ oversight. Many expect him to discuss DOJ's response to Colorado and Washington's recently passed marijuana legalization laws.
I doubt the objections to the laws raised yesterday by former DEA officials will sway him. When they wrote him in September 2012, before the elecion, asking him to publicly take a stand against the laws there was no response. There was silence. Here is their latest letter. The organization on the letterhead, Save Our Society From Drugs, is political action committee. [More...]
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Colorado's Amendment 64 Implementation Task Force submitted its report and recommendations yesterday on how to implement the Amendment which legalizes personal adult possession of marijuana.
Look for high taxes and low limits on what out of state residents can buy.
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Pot tourism may be coming to Colorado. The state's Marijuana Task Force today approved purchases at retail stores by out of state visitors. The quantity will be limited to reduce incentive for "smurfing" and resale on the black market.
The task force hearing minutes are here. [More...]
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In an interview airing today with Barbara Walters, President Obama says his administration will not interfere with the recently passed marijuana laws in Colorado or Washington legalizing recreational marijuana use. Walters asks him if he supports marijuana legalization. His response:
"I wouldn't go that far," Obama replied. "But what I think is that, at this point, Washington and Colorado, you've seen the voters speak on this issue."
"... as it is, the federal government has a lot to do when it comes to criminal prosecutions," Obama said. "It does not make sense, from a prioritization point of view, for us to focus on recreational drug users in a state that has already said that under state law, that's legal."
This may be the most-watched Barbara Walters interview ever. It airs tonight on 20/20. You can watch Obama's answer here.
Does this mean DOJ will not challenge the laws' provisions on licensing and sales?
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It's official. Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper has signed Amendment 64. Adult possession of small amounts of marijuana is no longer a state crime in Colorado.
Hickenlooper also issued an executive order today forming the 24-member Force on the Implementation of Amendment 64. Its membership will include lawmakers and stakeholders representing the interests of prosecutors, defense lawyers, the medical marijuana industry, backers of Amendment 64, the addiction treatment community, public health institutions, cities, counties, “a representative of marijuana consumers,” employers and employees, among others.
Its meetings will be public, and the targeted date for its recommendations to the governor is Feb. 28.
Congratulations, Coloradans. You did it. Voting matters.
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In November, Washington voters passed I-502 (full text here) which provides that adult possession of up to an ounce of marijuana or specified amounts of marijuana-infused products is not a state crime and creates a regulatory scheme to license sellers. The initiative is now law and went into effect today.
The vote on Colorado's Amendment 64, legalizing adult possession and setting up a regulatory framework to distribute and sell it, was certified by the Secretary of State today, and will become law by January 5.
The New York Times reports the Justice Department and Obama Administration are considering filing lawsuits to upend both states' laws, but a decision doesn't appear to be on the immediate horizon. [More...]
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Colorado Rep. Diana DeGette today followed through with her promise to introduce federal legislation to respect the will of the voters on Amendment 64. She has introduced the "Respect States' and Citizens' Rights Act of 2012."
The bill would amend 21 USC 903 of the Controlled Substance Act by adding a provision:
In the case of any State law that pertains to marijuana, no provision of this title shall be construed as indicating an intent on the part of the Congress to occupy the field in which that provision operates, including criminal penalties, to the exclusion of State law on the same subject matter, nor shall any provision of this title be construed as preempting any such State law.
Currently, section 903 reads:[More...]
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A day after Boulder DA Stan Garnett announced his office will drop pending marijuana cases involving adult possession of less than an ounce of marijuana, Denver District Attorney Mitch Morrissey announced his office will do the same.
There are about 70 cases pending in Denver that would fall under the amendment, Denver district attorney spokeswoman Lynn Kimbrough said Thursday. As those cases go through the court system, they will be reviewed for possible dismissal. This won't apply to cases where there is another charge or when the person is under age 21, she said. People who think their case may be dismissed still must appear at their court date, Kimbrough said.
The North Metro Drug Task Force remains opposed. Its latest argument: [More...]
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Boulder County District Attorney Stan Garnett today announced his office will dismiss all pending cases charging adult possession of up to an ounce of marijuana and/or related drug paraphernalia.
District Attorney Stan Garnett will dismiss all pending criminal cases of possession of less than an ounce of marijuana, saying the overwhelming support for Amendment 64 in Boulder County makes it highly unlikely a jury would ever reach a guilty verdict in any of those cases.
"You've seen an end to mere possession cases in Boulder County under my office," Garnett said Wednesday, becoming the first Colorado district attorney to drop pot cases because Colorado voters approved Amendment 64 earlier this month.
Boulder police responded by announcing they will no longer issue citations for these offenses: [More...]
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While Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper and state Attorney General John Suthers make telephone calls to DOJ, three of our Congresspersons are taking action instead of waiting for answers from the Justice Department on Colorado's newly passed Amendment 64. (Amendment 64 legalizes adult possession of small amounts of marijuana, creates a regulatory scheme to license growers and retail outlets and imposes excise taxes on wholesale sales. The text is here.)
Rep. Diana DeGette says she is putting the final touches on a bill that would amend the preemption section of the federal drug law to add a clause that excludes state marijuana laws. The Denver Post, in an editorial, applauds her for taking action and for urging the Justice Department to "show restraint." Reps. Jared Polis and Ed Perlmutter are also working, with DeGette and independently, on federal bills that would allow Amendment 64 to proceed, rather than waiting for an answer from D.O.J. [More...]
Rep. Perlmutter's spokeswoman told the Colorado Independent:[More...]
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If passed, Colorado will become the first state in the nation to remove criminal penalties for the adult use and possession of small amounts of marijuana. Marijuana will be taxed and regulated, and millions are earmarked for education.[More...]
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Colorado's Amendment 64, the ballot initiative that will decriminalize personal adult use of marijuana and regulate marijuana sales in Colorado, will benefit the entire state, not just marijuana users.
The Colorado Center on Law and Policy report on Amendment 64, concludes that Amendment 64 is likely to produce $60 million in new revenue and savings to Colorado. In addition to creating new jobs, particularly in construction, it will generate $24 million a year in state revenue for schools, specifically the Building Excellent Schools Today (BEST) capital construction program.
As opponents of the measure launch their final ad blitz this week, take a look at who supports Amendment 64.
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Last month, Amendment 64, Colorado' proposal to legalize small amounts of marijuana for adult use had a 51 to 49 lead. This week, after the pot warriors came to town and took out ads, the lead is down to 48 to 39%.
This bill is an impoortant one to pass. Right now, possession of under an ounce of pot carries a hundred dollar fine --and a criminal record. You have to disclose it when applying for jobs. If you are in college, your will lose your loan for a while. Paying to expunge it later is expensive, and given the number of records on the internet, some will likely stay there. It can affect your ability to rent an apartment or apply for some kinds of professional licenses.
If the law isn't on the books, the state can't charge, and you are free of that pesky criminal record. Same goes for your kids, where a record could hurt their chances of getting into or staying in college. [More...]
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