Medical marijuana centers cost Boulder more than they bring in?

Categories: Marijuana

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Last week, Boulder City Council extended a nine-month moratorium on new medical marijuana businesses. It was a surprising move for a community perceived as medical-pot friendly. But senior assistant city attorney Kathy Haddock argues that it was necessary due in part to the belief that MMJ is not nearly the cash cow it's advertised as being.

Haddock hasn't personally crunched all the data, and even if she had, her expertise isn't in budgeting. Still, she suspects that "it's not a matter of whether we're in the red, but how much we're in the red.

"My fees alone, if we put a number on them, as the city does for its internal calculating, take up half of the fees paid by the businesses. And even though my work on this is a lot, it's not half of the total work the city does. It's much less than that. And knowing how much more time other people put into this, and seeing some of the analysis from other departments, there's no question the impact has been very broad and much more than anybody anticipated -- and very intense, with the glut of applications."

boulder city council 2012.jpg
The 2012 Boulder City Council.
The set-up costs alone were staggering, Haddock notes.

"We had to write our regulations because the city council directed that we go ahead and allow these businesses before the state had written its laws," she points out. "And the way the state law was written, they don't even start looking at the businesses until the local governments decide to issue a license -- and they don't look at things like zoning and land use. They do inspections for security issues and things like that, but they don't have to do all the building review things, like fire-suppression stuff, that happens at the city level. The city's staff is involved in those things, and it's been overwhelming at times."

Wouldn't sales tax offset some of these expenses? Not by Haddock's calculations. "Sales tax isn't supposed to cover cost related to a particular program, but the peripheral things government has to do to support businesses -- like law-enforcement responses and the cost of keeping up the streets, so people can get to dispensaries. It's not supposed to reimburse the city for the cost of running one particular type of business."

Hence, the moratorium, which Haddock characterizes as "not just a breather -- it's a pause on the activity, so we can do some analysis. Because otherwise, we're trying to do analysis on a moving target, and we don't have the resources to do that and process applications at the same time."

Page down to see more details about the reasons behind the moratorium.


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Donkey Hotay
Donkey Hotay

 Boulder pot attorney urges some medical marijuana shops to move

A Boulder attorney who specializes in medical marijuana is urging dispensaries in the city that are within 1,000 feet of a school to move now before the federal government has a chance to shut them down. 

Jeff Gard is now warning his clients and other dispensaries that Boulder is the "very likely next target" for federal authorities, given the proliferation of medical marijuana businesses in the city. Boulder has 37 cultivation facilities, 32 dispensaries and six marijuana-infused product manufacturing sites licensed to do business.

According to city records, 13 dispensaries are within 1,000 feet of a school -- including the University of Colorado.

No one at those dispensaries would comment.

http://www.dailycamera.com/bou...

Sara Conrad
Sara Conrad

The way I'm reading this is they extended the moratorium so that they could have to time to modify things the way that certain people pressure them to do. Thinking specifically about downtown Boulder.Well, city council while you are considering further limitations, I'm going to be watching you and if necessary, modifying you out of office. And you going to apply the same limitations on medical marijuna grows, etc as you do on home brewers? On liquor stores? Stop picking on my dispensaries! 

Donkey Hotay
Donkey Hotay

NewsFlash !!

Panel kills bill to create med-pot "bank"  

A bill to create a first-of-its-kind financial system for medical marijuana businesses in Colorado collapsed Tuesday after being pummeled with questions about what it would actually accomplish.The Senate Finance Committee killed Senate Bill 75 by a 5-2 vote after about three hours of testimony and debate.

Supporters had hoped the bill would extend banking-like services to the medical-marijuana industry, which has largely been blocked by federal regulations from using traditional banks or credit unions

The bill would have allowed state regulators to authorize the creation of novel "financial cooperatives" that could take medical-marijuana accounts.

But the wheels came off when state officials testified that the state commissioner of financial services would not approve such entities over insurance concerns and that other regulations would likely continue to prevent medical-marijuana patients from using credit cards at dispensaries. 

Questions arose over whether other banks could accept checks written on the cooperatives' accounts.

By the end of the hearing, even the bill's sponsor, Sen. Pat Steadman, D-Denver, was resigned to the likelihood that his bill couldn't solve the problem he hoped it would. 

http://www.denverpost.com/brea...

Stihgnob
Stihgnob

 "Sales tax isn't supposed to cover cost related to a particular program, but the peripheral things government has to do to support businesses -- like law-enforcement responses and the cost of keeping up the streets, so people can get to dispensaries. It's not supposed to reimburse the city for the cost of running one particular type of business."  "cost of keeping up streets" LMAO. Common lady, really? What do you charge an hour to help (lol, again) boulder decifer which streets they will plow so peolpe can get to dispensaries.

Nomoreseeds
Nomoreseeds

The head of the MMED has shut down all seed sales.   Check rare dankness's website "ware to buy" section.  They no longer sell seeds in Colorado.  Seeds were never legal but tolerated until a few breeders decided to go international.   Shame on them! 

Donkey Hotay
Donkey Hotay

Once again the Puerile Pot Clowns ruin their own party.

guest
guest

If the City of Boulder didn't try to deny a dozen centers, all of which won their appeals, then they wouldn't be in this situation.  Spent hundreds of thousands trying to shut folks down only to lose. 

Monkey
Monkey

 "Not that the city would stop licensing medical marijuana businesses, but there may be some changes we need to make so that we're safer from legal challenges, or would be more likely to prevail if there were a legal challenge against what the city is doing."Maybe they should look at the news, they can't do anything to protect the City, the last resort the Feds will take is threatening council members, and they will close down faster than any business when threatened."Last October the 2nd District Court of Appeal said Long Beach violated the federal Controlled Substances Act because it went "beyond decriminalization into authorization." Specifically, the court cited the city's application fees and its awarding of permits"

What a Waste
What a Waste

As numerous successful MMJ denial appeals have proven, Kathy Haddock, Mishawn Cook and others at the City of Boulder have been aggressive to the point of absurdity in misapplying city code and "vetting" medical cannabis companies. Together these two have cost Boulder taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars. The question shouldn't be "Do MMCs cost Boulder more than they are worth," it should be, "Why have wasteful witch hunts been allowed to continue?"

Donkey Hotay
Donkey Hotay

So they should allow dispensaries to have owners who engaged in massive fraud credit-repair schemes, who were large scale cocaine traffickers -- 800+lbs -- who then became DEA informants, who then stole cocaine from the DEA, and then engaged in a massive stock fraud scheme ?

Get a Grip, Man
Get a Grip, Man

 Why not? I thought you were against prohibition laws? One man's drug dealer is another man's pharmacist! lol

Jaded
Jaded

Yes Donkey!!! Legalize all drugs for everyone, like alcohol! End all drug prohibition LIKE we ended ALCOHOL prohibition.

The bees have been released, enjoy eeyore. rofl

dancin
dancin

"we need time to analyze the impact of medical marijuana taking up all the industrial space in the city,"Why? If they take up all the space and there is demand for more, the owners of that space will raise their rents likely to the point that the grow operations will have to move out of the city, freeing it up. Government is the worst and least efficient decider of which businesses should be allowed to operate.

Guesto
Guesto

oh fuck are talking about that there Free Market? We don't do that there in this here US of Obama !! No sir !!! 

Michael Roberts
Michael Roberts

Strong take, Dancin -- one we're going to make an upcoming Comment of the Day. Congrats.

Guest
Guest

Grow laws to go into affect in Park County.http://www.theflume.com/

High Country Caregiver
High Country Caregiver

The Park County ordinance suggests that patients and caregivers give up their Constitutional Rights against unlawful search and seizure and must allow law enforcement, county inspectors and fire departments to inspect growing marijuana plants.

Donkey Hotay
Donkey Hotay

And what of the violation against self-incrimination inherent in the law that requires DUI suspects to remain at the scene of their accidents ?

Robert Chase
Robert Chase

The Park County Commission should be detained indefinitely -- time to form a posse!

Nedhead420
Nedhead420

Kathy Haddock is a worthless lawyer. Check into the days when she was town attorney for Nederland -- what a disgrace she was. It's no wonder that it costs the city so much to pay her -- she has limited comprehension and suspect legal skills. Maybe the city should look at hiring a competent attorney instead.

Lawrence Herbert
Lawrence Herbert

Until Congress (Namely Republican Rep Lamar Smith of Dallas, Republican Rep. Scott Tipton of Western Colorado) responds with reasobable regulations for Cannabis Commerce by forming the Cannabis, Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (CATF) local regs are of little value.  Get Scott Tipton and Lamar Smith out of office and into prison (like Douglass Bruce) where they belong.  BE WISE LEGALIZE!

Guesto
Guesto

you sir are a smart man. its amazing that Lamar Smith holds pretty much all the cards on this issue.

Ron Paul 2012 

Robert Chase
Robert Chase

The idiot Nazis can't even manage to accomodate new businesses!  Can you imagine what a furor would erupt were the City Council to enact a moratorium on new doctor's offices or other small shops while it conducted a fraught "analysis" of them?  Boulder may have a few more educated people and leftists than many places in Colorado, but it does not begin to qualify as "The People's Republic of Boulder"; its government is as podunk and reactionary as that of most other Colorado towns.

Donkey Hotay
Donkey Hotay

So now the Leftist People's Republic of Boulder are Nazis ?

Flip-flop much ?

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