Medical marijuana centers react differently to U.S. Attorney shut-down orders
Letters from the U.S. Attorneys Office telling medical marijuana centers they have 45 days to shut down or face prosecution went out yesterday.
Some shops are already receiving their ultimatums in the mail.
Samantha Beckmann, manager of Greenest Green in Denver, which is just across the street from Denver's North High School, received her letter this morning. Although she said the shop expected the letter, she didn't think it would have come so soon.
Despite the negative implications of the letters for businesses across the state, Beckmann says she's remaining positive that this could be a good thing for the dispensary. She says the owners had been discussing a move before the letters came, and this just speeds up their process. "We love the clientele here," she says. "But we want to get a spot where we can have a single, standing location, away from schools. We have to keep positive about this."
Julie Postlethwait, spokeswoman for the state Medical Marijuana Enforcement Division, says centers are allowed to move locations only if their local authority allows it, and only within the city under which they were originally licensed. For example, a Denver dispensary can't move to Lakewood. And as attorney Warren Edson pointed out to our Michael Roberts today, finding a spot to move might be tricky.
Postlethwait adds that the MMED has not been involved in the U.S. Attorneys Office investigation so far. In fact, the division was only informed about the letters going out after the public announcement had been made. She says the MMED doesn't even know which dispensaries have received letters. But she stresses that her office will cooperate with the feds and hand over any paperwork needed as well as help destroy any seized marijuana.
Despite not receiving letters yet, several other shops within 1,000 feet of a school in the metro area are already preparing for the worst.
Page down to read more dispensary reactions.