Marijuana: Smart Colorado's campaign to slow recreational pot sales launch

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Numerous members of the marijuana industry see the City of Denver as putting up obstacles to shops wanting to be open for the January 1 kickoff of recreational pot sales -- a claim officials vigorously deny. But there's one local organization that appears to be doing all it can to prevent the launch from going smoothly: Smart Colorado, which has recently shared an open letter to the mayor and city council highly critical of its actions and a how-to guide to delaying hearings that must take place before stores can be approved.

Given that Smart Colorado's motto is "Protecting Youth from Marijuana," many observers were expecting the organization to weigh in on Denver City Council's decision to decriminalize pot for those under 21 -- a proposal that's up for a final vote on Monday. And the group's most recent post seems to be laying the groundwork for such opposition. Entitled "More Shocking Health Studies," the piece notes that "Smart Colorado is being inundated with studies showing the health impact that marijuana has on our youth," and highlights two of them: "Brain Scan Suggests that 'Pothead' Stereotype Might Be Real," from Health magazine, and the Time magazine item "Pot Smokers, Schizophrenics May Share Similar Brain Changes."

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Denver City Councilman Albus Brooks is championing the decriminalization of marijuana for those under age 21.
There's no mention thus far of a federal study showing that teen marijuana use hasn't gone up despite changes in state pot laws -- but Mason Tvert, Amendment 64 proponent and Marijuana Policy Project spokesman, certainly wants the information out. Read more about it below.

Among the other recent items posted by Smart Colorado is an "Open Letter to Denver's Mayor and City Council" from child welfare scholar Kathleen Wells and architect Liz O'Sullivan, both of whom live in Capitol Hill. We've produced their entire missive on the next page of this post, but here's a telling excerpt about information Denver officials are said to be ignoring in their rush to institute A64:

Despite attempts to change its classification, marijuana remains a Schedule I Controlled Substance: It has a high potential for abuse, has no currently accepted medical use, and is unsafe. This classification, along with fact-based scientific evidence of the serious, adverse, and permanent effects of early and persistent marijuana use, was not admitted at this hearing. Testimony from an administrator of group homes for men in recovery within 2 blocks of the facility, an administrator of a preschool within 4 blocks, parents and neighbors concerned with "drug tourism" and its related effects (parking problems, public drug use, unsafe condition of users driving out of neighborhoods) were not persuasive. Information from Denver's Office of Drug Strategy showing that teenagers obtain drugs through social contacts "and the more legal opportunities to purchase the drug in the community results in greater opportunities for youth to obtain those drugs," was also disallowed.
Still, the recent Smart Colorado post that offers the most practical advice to those wishing to slow the weed legalization train is probably "Basic Steps to Prepare for Retail Marijuana Store License Hearing."

Step one in the document, also shared here, informs folks how to ask for a 25-day hearing extension -- something capable of preventing given shops from opening on January 1. Also included are strategies about the best arguments against such stores opening, as well as the procedure for filing an objection after a recommendation is made.

Clearly, Smart Colorado wants Denver officials to slow down when it comes to pot, whereas people in the cannabis industry would prefer them to speed up. We'll have a better idea which tactics were most successful come New Year's Day.

Continue to see the open letter to Denver's mayor and city council, the license hearing steps and a Marijuana Policy Project release about a new federal drug study.


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42 comments
k2rob333
k2rob333

attn.  DonkeyHotay.  the CO State Constitution states to regulate & tax MJ similar to alcohol;  ie  hence the reference to alcohol.  just a little clarity....

John Pinnick
John Pinnick

Hey Smart Colorado, do any of you ever have a drink of alcohol? If your answer is yes then you need to shut the F up about Marijuana. Tired of every hypocrite out there. Unless you are alcohol free, prescription medicine free and tobacco free you really don't have a pot to piss in, so piss off.

Suzanne Houston Nash
Suzanne Houston Nash

As well they should. Why is it "experts" get to dictate what everyone eats, drinks, smokes, goes to bed, gets up, and watches on television? Have your say on what is healthy or not and then let every person decide for him or herself.

Suzanne Houston Nash
Suzanne Houston Nash

Well, tough cookies. People voted on it and it's now the law. Some people don't like tax hikes either, but they still have to pay, don't they.

FreakOfTheWeak
FreakOfTheWeak

Hey haters. The state of Colorado is gonna be serving up marijuana in retail shops like they serve up Nachos at the 7-11. Can other state say the same thing? Didn't think so. Smart Colorado. Not so smart, I guess. 

stuka1
stuka1

SO, let's get this straight: the OFFICIAL MEDIA SHILLS of "Smart Colorado" --- THE PROPAGANDA ARM of the ONDCP --- are pumping out as much bullshit DISinformation about cannabis as they can on the eve of the opening of retail shops.  

 Why isn't THAT the headline, instead of buying into the bullshit they are spewing?



Title VII Office of National Drug Control Policy Reauthorization Act of 1998: H11225:

Responsibilities. --The Director-- [...]

(12) shall ensure that no Federal funds appropriated to the Office of National Drug Control Policy shall be expended for any study or contract relating to the legalization (for a medical use or any other use) of a substance listed in schedule I of section 202 of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 812)

****************AND TAKE SUCH ACTIONS AS NECESSARY TO OPPOSE ANY ATTEMPT TO LEGALIZE******************************** 

the use of a substance (in any form) that-- is listed in schedule I of section 202 of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 812); and has not been approved for use for medical purposes by the Food and Drug Administration;

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

   .        

             *** More than 1 TON of Hydro Bud Busted after Traffic Stop ***


What started as a routine traffic stop of a semitruck west of Flagstaff turned into the largest marijuana seizure ever recorded by the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office, a spokesman said Monday.


Two California men were arrested and accused of hauling a record 2,300 pounds of marijuana, said Dwight D’Evelyn, Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office spokesman.


The cargo’s street value was estimated at more than $8.2million, D’Evelyn said. The pair were en route to the East Coast, and the marijuana was packed in a “sophisticated manner” for easier distribution, he said.


Sheriff’s K-9 deputies stopped the rig Thursday on Interstate40 between Seligman and Ash Fork after noticing a malfunction in the semitrailer’s splash guards, D’Evelyn said.


The driver was identified as Peng Law, 44, of Sunnyvale, and the passenger was identified as Bing Huang, 45, from San Jose.


“Both appeared much more nervous than the innocent motoring public,” D’Evelyn said. “The occupants were unable to answer basic questions that two persons sharing a destination would commonly know.”


A police dog search turned up “a very strong odor of marijuana.” Further searching revealed “high-grade marijuana packed in heavy-duty, vacuum-sealed plastic bags.”


Law and Huang were booked at the Camp Verde detention center on suspicion of transportation of marijuana for sale and possession of marijuana for sale, D’Evelyn said.


Each was being held on a $15 million bond. The semitruck and trailer were seized.


http://bcove.me/5lpb6jus


UpIsDown
UpIsDown

The pedophiles at SMART COLORADO just don't get it. 

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

There is NO URGENCY to open the Greedy Big $$ Commercial Dispensaries ... since every recreational stoner in Colorado already has a source for the recreational marijuana they've been smoking ... for years!



Loren Bagola
Loren Bagola

all who voted are...do you remember how many voted for it?

Olivia Nicodemus
Olivia Nicodemus

* Medicate * I think recreational will be a huge success but I hope it doesn't take away too much from the medical patients. I'd hate to see my shops go to just recreation.

David Court
David Court

Why not focus on proven and continuing dangers to the "children" like obesity, heart disease and diabetes ? You need to be 21 to purchase pot. Any child can purchase as many deadly burgers and shakes as they can stuff in their faces.

Gregg Looker
Gregg Looker

I'm predicting they will all sell out of product the first day...

irq77
irq77

Another informative article by the Westward.  Great job Michael.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Hey A64 liars and pimps -- tell us again why rec. marijuana is so harmful and dangerous that NO ADULT under 21 shall be allowed ANY LEGAL ACCESS to it -- not one gram, not one plant -- under full CRIMINAL Penalty of Law?

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@John Pinnick ... another clueless stoner, always wants to change the subject to alcohol when marijuana is the topic under discussion.



DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Suzanne Houston Nash ... enjoy that 15% and RISING $40 MILLION Excise Tax that THE PEOPLE -- voters -- have slapped on your precious marijuana.


DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@stuka1  ... that festering turd A64 is completely OPPOSED to real legalization.


You stump-stupid stammering prohibitionist shitsucker.


stuka1
stuka1

@DonkeyHotay 

Oh, look, more hysterical SPAMMING from the resident ONDCP shill.  Go lick ChrisTard TURDstone's ass some more.

UpIsDown
UpIsDown

@DonkeyHotay No one needs to ask you freaks for permission to open anything anymore. The people have spoken. Deal with it.

tutonehcc
tutonehcc topcommenter

agreed, and suckas gonna be getting jacked for their stash just like when iPhone models go on sale opening day

UpIsDown
UpIsDown

@DonkeyHotay The language of A64 was drafted in an attempt to gain the support of even the most 'dumbed down' voters. Giving legal access to anyone under 21 would have been a death sentence for the bill. This is because we still have mentally ill pedophile freaks like the folks at SMART COLORADO to spew their lies to anyone willing to listen. Smart move by the drafters of A64 to craft it this way.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay

@DonkeyHotay Tell us why it's imperative that it is, besides making it easier for us to seduce the young men?

HempShare
HempShare

@DonkeyHotay "Stoner" is the typical response from the insecurity, inferiority-complexed, pill-popping, greed-addicted, alcoholic shamer who suffers from cannabinoid deficiency syndrome.


Chronic Cannabinoid Deficiency Syndrome is another name for: "Cancer".

HempShare
HempShare

@stuka1 @DonkeyHotay Are you telling me it took FOUR K-9s with Humans attached to discover 2300 lbs of weed in a 53' x 8' x 10' metal box with one entrance and no one inside trying to hide the weed from them? It really is time to stop this charade.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@UpIsDown "The people have spoken"


STRICT REGULATION and Massive TAXATION!


Deal with it, chump.

..Matt...
..Matt...

So you completely FUCKED every Adult under 21, throwing them under the bus of criminal prosecution, just so you could purchase a pathetic ounce of warehouse schwag?

Fuck you scumbag, and fuck what you stand for.

..Matt...
..Matt...

Thinks the FIST of REGULATION being repeatedly jackhammered up his ass for a pathetic ounce of overtaxed overpriced retail schwag is "winning".

Loser.

UpIsDown
UpIsDown

@DonkeyHotay @UpIsDown We are dealing with it. We are opening retail pot shops in 2 weeks and we don't give a toss who doesn't like it. We won, freak.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@do001 ... this festering turd A64 is the first, last and only step -- it Commercialized Cannabis instead of legalizing it, surrendering total control to the Greedy Big $$ Dispensary Cartels and the parasitic law enforcement goons at the insatiable Dept. of Revenue, at the expense of every private individual user/grower/caregiver in Colorado.


A64 guarantees there will never be any Real Legalization -- just continuous Government REGULATION and CONTROL, i.e. a continuation of prohibition.


And that scumbags like you cravenly continued the CRIMINAL prosecution of every ADULT under 21 -- the demographic group that has historically suffered the most life-desroying arrests and prosecutions for pot -- just so you could obtain a pathetic ounce of pot for yourself proves what a self-centered callous hypocritical lowlife you actually are.




do001
do001

One step at a time matt, we hear you.  We were all in the same boat not too long ago.  Big players with big money - protecting youth is their last dying argument.  I agree, criminal prosecution of our youth is much more dangerous to health and wellbeing than Cannabis ever will be. 

MikeGr
MikeGr

@..Matt...Apparently, even "the most dumbed down" voters didn't read A64 -- all they do is whine about the government getting too harsh on pot now, but A64 asked for more harshness all along!

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