Marijuana legislative roundup: Child-neglect bills, out-of-state pot enforcement on the table

Categories: Marijuana

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State lawmakers are working on six bills related to marijuana during this legislative session, not including the proposed budgets for the marijuana regulation divisions of the Department of Revenue and the Department of Public Health, which also have to be approved by the general assembly.

Among them are two that could arguably make all cannabis-using parents criminals and another that funnels Colorado tax dollars to out-of-state law enforcement. Read on for our roundup.

(Click over to the state legislative site for the full text of all the bills below.)

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Senator Linda Newell.
Senate Bills 177 and 178 would clarify a "drug-endangered child" with regard to child abuse and neglect cases. Both bills seem to be a second attempt from Sen. Linda Newell, a Democrat from Littleton, to create a hard definition of child endangerment that includes marijuana and doesn't take into consideration Amendment 64's passage or medical marijuana exemptions.

According to the language of the SB 178; it is considered child endangerment if, "in the presence of a child or on the premises where a child is found or reside...a person knowingly cultivates, produces, possesses, uses, or attempts to cultivate, produces, possess, or use a controlled substance, as defined in section 18-18-102(5)...when any such activity poses a threat of injury to the child's life or health."

Section 18-18-102 of Colorado law clearly includes marijuana as a controlled substance, and makes no mention of any legal, allowable amount that parents can possess, grow or use.

Last year, Newell said her bill wasn't intended to go after parents who provide a "very safe home" for children but still indulge in legal alcohol and marijuana use from time to time. Instead, she argued that her measure was intended to help strengthen laws against parents already charged with neglect or endangerment.

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House Bill 1196 would create a "marijuana impacts task force" to "evaluate the impacts that the cultivation, testing, sale, consumption and regulation of retail marijuana" have on local government budgets and services. The task force will comprise seventeen people -- mostly government officials and law enforcement, but with a few "marijuana community" members thrown in, to be decided by the local chapter of NORML (an organization that has pretty much been on the sidelines of any action in Colorado for the last few years) and an industry representative appointed by the local UFCW chapter, which represents a minority of dispensary workers statewide.



House Bill 1209 would create a "marijuana diversion prevention grant program," which would award money to the Colorado State Patrol to fund efforts to prevent marijuana from being taken out of state; it would also grant funding to law enforcement agencies in states that border Colorado. The money comes from tax revenue generated from Colorado retail sales of cannabis. The bill has a hefty co-sponsorship, with eight members of the House signing on so far. 

Senate Bill 37 would prevent people with federal-assistance cards from withdrawing cash from cash machines at medical and recreational pot shops and strip clubs. The measure was proposed following a January 2014 report by Fox31 showing that welfare money was withdrawn from nineteen dispensaries statewide.

Continue to read more about the latest marijuana-related legislation in Colorado.



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89 comments
RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

Every parent in Colorado who uses cannabis is threatened by SB14-177 and SB14-178, sponsored by Sen. Andy Kerr (D), Sen. Linda Newell (D), and Representative Dave Young (D), which re-define "drug-endangered child" in statute.  Under SB14-177, mothers whose babies test positive for THC are guilty of child abuse, even if their obstetrician recommended that they use cannabis during pregnancy (while mothers whose babies test positive for prescribed narcotics are exempted from prosecution).  Even more outrageous is SB14-178, which declares a child to be "drug-endangered" if "... on the premises where a child is found, or where a child resides... the person knowingly engages in the manufacture or attempted manufacture of a controlled substance ..."; according to the bill, "A person commits child abuse if he or she is responsible for creating a situation in which a child is drug-endangered".  Just having a child in the same house as there is any cannabis growing, or pressing kif into hash qualifies as "manufacture of a controlled substance", so the bill essentially declares parents who use cannabis child-abusers.  SB14-178 also insinuates that growing cannabis "poses a threat of injury to the child's life or health".  These bills are an open invitation to the Division of Child Welfare to threaten parents who use cannabis and a pretext to take their children from them.  Our laws already protect children from abuse and inappropriate exposure to drugs, and there is no reason to believe that parents' use of cannabis threatens their children's health.

Come testify against SB14-177 and SB14-178 when they are heard before the Senate Judiciary Committee next Wednesday, 4/9/14, at 1:30pm in SCR352 in the Capitol.  Contact the members of the Senate Judiciary Committee to oppose this terrible legislation:

Lucia Guzman (Chair) - lucia.guzman.senate@state.co.us - 303-866-4862
Linda Newell (Vice-Chair) - linda.newell.senate@gmail.com - 303-866-4846
Michael Johnston - mike.johnston.senate@state.co.us - 303-866-4864
Steve King - steve.king.senate@state.co.us - 303-866-3077
Kevin Lundberg - kevin@kevinlundberg.com - 303-866-4853

Hillary Smith (staff) - hillary.smith@state.co.us - (303) 866-3277


Robin Shaw
Robin Shaw

Um.. Weed was everywhere before it was legal. People need to stop panicking. And the government needs to stop throwing tax dollars away on their over zealous anti- marijuana regulations. It's out if hand...

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

"Amendment 64 will prevent ~10,000 arrests for cannabis annually in Colorado" 

-- Robert Chase



"I do not believe that there will be any fallout for medical cannabis [from A64]" 

-- Robert Chase



"There has been no fallout from having passed Amendment 64" 

-- Robert Chase



melser
melser

All the marijuana growers and vendors are endangering their kids. It is time to stop the madness and direct those people to the good things in life. http://ow.ly/vpilo

Brendan Flynn
Brendan Flynn

but should keep that in state..only makes sense

John Pinnick
John Pinnick

that was before they realized how much money they were gonna have. We'll have brand new schools built in every district that has legal weed by the end of the year. JK. But there is going to be a surplus of dollars, that's for sure.

Vanessa KC
Vanessa KC

I think we should keep the money in state for schools k-12 and to help decrease college costs and um to fix potholes everywhere.

KathleenChippi
KathleenChippi topcommenter

Does this mean that Newell will be throwing down a mandated GMO labeling bill so parents and everyone can know if they have "or ANY LEGAL SUBSTANCE capable of causing mental or physical impairment." in their houses?  

And it looks like sugar would be included in causing impairment: 

"“New research coming out of some of America’s most respected institutions is starting to find that sugar, the way that many people are eating it today, is a toxin.....” – Dr. Sanjay Gupta

Sugar is Addictive: According to neuroscientist Eric Styce, another expert interviewed in the 60 minutes feature, he has used MRI scans to evaluate what happens in the brain when people eat sugar.

He discovered that sugar causes stimulation of the reward centers in the brain in a similar manner as drugs of abuse like cocaine. It shares many of the same features as drugs of abuse. People start binging on it, they crave it obsessively and lose control over their consumption."

  http://authoritynutrition.com/why-sugar-can-kill-you/

And since when does the GA think they can write laws that violate the state Constitution?  oh, I forgot, all the time regarding pot starting with HB1284 and SB109.  

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

The headline is inaccurate -- to be clear, SB14-177 and SB14-178 would declare children on the premises where any controlled substance (still including cannabis) is "manufactured" (gathering kif from a grinder and pressing it into hashish, e.g.) "drug-endangered".  Any adult responsible for making a child "drug-endangered" would be guilty of CHILD ABUSE, not merely neglect.

Tim Wright
Tim Wright

Exactly, Kev Markis. Any and all extra money that comes from marijuana revenue beyond what was anticipated should just go into other facets of Denver cultivation that need to advanced. The streets would be a good start (before the streetcar) because anyone who's spent time East of LoDo knows we need it. Anything, really, there's a million things that can be done here. AND! I also say screw everyone else! They made fun of CO ;) We'll show 'em.

Jesse James
Jesse James

F$@? Them!!!! Colorado needs all the money the can get for "EDUCATION"!!!! You don't how many "budget cuts" our schools are going through every year. I hate "stupid ass" ppl!!!!

COmidnightrider
COmidnightrider

NEWELL and SO MANY other Legislators WILL BE remembered in NOVEMBER This Year! Perverted Interests of the Lobbyists is getting out of control and wasting our Taxpayers limited resources for Politicians to have their Session! Maybe This is what we NEED, Lobbying Reform, also?

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

HB14-1209 should be stopped too; revenue from cannabis is supposed to go to school construction and Colorado's real needs, not to the prohibitionist parasites who should already be out of a job!  The determination on the part of boosters to mischaracterize the Cole Memos' law enforcement priorities as "guidelines" for the conduct of business felonious under Federal law is a fatal mistake for resisting all the idiotic proposals to forestall Federal intervention there is no reason to suppose will occur.  Instead of substituting a regulated market for the black market, consumers along the Front Range are about to subsidize cops to try to arrest more people for cannabis in the hinterland, and they are leaving poor and rural Coloradans to face the brunt of all the restored felonies (up to a Class 1 felony) for cannabis.  This is very wrong; work together to end Prohibition in Colorado -- the first step is to realize how very far from victory we are, even here.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

William, SB14-178 would define a child to be "drug-endangered" if "... on the premises where a child is found, or where a child resides... the person knowingly engages in the manufacture or attempted manufacture of a controlled substance ..." that would appear to cover the cultivation of cannabis and the making of any product such as hash from it!  This provision has no qualifications relating to health, safety, or welfare.  The repeated references to cultivation as a possible threat to children are bizarre, and clearly are an open invitation to prohibitionists in CDHS to use cannabis as a pretext for taking children away from parents and using the threat of felony charges as leverage against them.  These bills threaten every custodial parent who uses cannabis in their own homes.  Stop them!

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

... unfortunately it's the clueless stoners themselves who've BEGGED the Government for many of these REGULATIONS, RESTRICTIONS and continued Criminal Penalties ... see A64.


DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@John Pinnick"We'll have brand new schools built in every district that has legal weed by the end of the year. "


Another economics challenged brain-dead stoner.


The much ballyhooed excise tax won't even generate enough $$ to build 1 (one) school at the rate it is going.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@KathleenChippi  "or ANY LEGAL SUBSTANCE capable of causing mental or physical impairment.""


Valium? ... Adderall? ... Vicodin? ...ALCOHOL!! 

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

"Any and all extra money that comes from marijuana revenue beyond what was anticipated  ..."


LOL! ... the LYING LIARS behind that festering turd A64 LIED so EXTREMELY that the revenue from marijuana won't be anywhere near the $40 MILLION they baited the voters with.


At the current rate of collection, there won't be enough marijuana excise tax to build a SINGLE school.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@COmidnightrider  ... don't forget the Vile Greedy Big $$ Dispensary Cartels' attack upon the Constitutional Rights of Patients to be able to grow their own sustainable supplies, and their slimy back-stabbing two-timing McLawyer Lobbyists who are instigating it on behalf of the unbridled greed of their corporate dispensary pigs.



DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase  "revenue from cannabis is supposed to go to school construction and Colorado's real needs"


Says the hypocrite who reneged on the massive tax promises of A64 and lobbied against  Prop. AA which provided tax revenue to school construction and other Colorado needs.



DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase


"I do not believe that there will be any fallout for medical cannabis [from A64]" 

-- Robert Chase


"There has been no fallout from having passed Amendment 64" 

-- Robert Chase

Maria
Maria

@DonkeyHotay  You're right, it won't be near 40 million.  More like $120m at the rate it's being collected.  Moron.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay  You lie.  The Constitution authorized the General Assembly to ask for an excise tax on wholesale transfers of cannabis, not the excise and a sales tax surcharge of up to 15% too!  Proposition AA was not what the People authorized in the Constitution, but because opponents could not lay their case before the public and the corporate lapdog media faithfully parroted the Establishment's lies, voters were duped, and the exorbitant, extra-constitutional taxes passed.

Seville
Seville

Whatever helps you convince yourself you're not a complete loser, I guess.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Seville  "the pointless ramblings of Robert Chase"


Takes less than a fraction of a second to archive his idiocies for future display, humiliation and embarrassment.

Seville
Seville

You devote a pathetic amount of your life to archiving the pointless ramblings of Robert Chase.

FYI - It doesn't help you seem any less like a complete psycho.

D0NKEYH0TAY
D0NKEYH0TAY

@DonkeyHotay I wonder if that is because most starting product was transferred from MMJ tax free. Time will likely disprove my retarded ramblings.

a.e.f
a.e.f

@DonkeyHotay  Yammering? Its already cleared 2 million. Now with winter ending, and more tourists coming they will make even more per month.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@a.e.f  ... you really have no idea what you're yammering about, do you?


The Excise Tax -- for school construction -- won't be anywhere near $40 million. At current collection rates it will barely clear $2 million.


But since the Lying Liars behind A64 promoted and predicted it would generate at least $40 million per year for schools, the Legislature ought to RAISE THE RATE on that Excise Tax to whatever % is necessary to actually generate that $40 million.


Reap what ye sow.

a.e.f
a.e.f

@DonkeyHotay @a.e.f  Medical pricing still is more then enough to match the tax needs. 

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@a.e.f @a.e.f " Now that theres [sic] more shops with more stock you will see ..."


A REDUCTION in pricing, and LESS tax $$ flowing per sale.


Ipso facto.


When those first Greedy Big $$ Dispensary Pigs opened in January, they JACKED their PRICES up 2x, 3x, even 4x higher than the same medical bud was selling for a day earlier.

Once the Greedy Pigs no longer have an exclusive advantage to RAPE the consumers, the pricing will settle back down to normal "medical" pricing, meaning for the same volume sold, those stores will generate 1/2, 1/3, or 1/4 the sales tax revenue than in January.

a.e.f
a.e.f

@DonkeyHotay @a.e.f  Yes just for January. Now that theres more shops with more stock you will see more income over the months. But trying little troll

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@a.e.f 


Keep lying and just pulling numbers out of your bong-soaked brain, stoner.


Recreational marijuana businesses paid $195,318 in excise tax during January, which will be put toward school construction.


How big of a school are you going to build for $2.3 million?


That won't even buy a HOUSE in Cherry Hills Village.




DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@a.e.f @DonkeyHotay @Maria  


So twice as many shops now open ... and not counting the LOWER pricing that competition now forces ...  for the sake of the discussion, at best you've got 2x the volume ... so that'd be $390,000 in excise tax ... per MONTH.


How many schools will that build?


That's only $35 MILLION SHORT of the bullshit $40 million promissed by the lying liars who promoted that piece of shit A64.


The State ought to take the A64 Pimps at their word, and continue to RAISE the Excise Tax to WHATEVER LEVEL is necessary to generate the $40 MILLION / year that Lyin' Brian Vicente, Mendacious Mason Tvert and Bullshit Betty Aldworth claimed would be generated.


a.e.f
a.e.f

@DonkeyHotay @Maria  Yeah thats just January. NOw with  more shops and stock the amount of cash pulled in will be far greater. 

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase  ... OBEY the WILL of the VOTERS !!


Resistance is Futile, You will be Assimilated !!



RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay  What do you imagine yourself to be gloating about?  I was never one of those who thought voters would strike down every single law related to cannabis; with only one in five voters or fewer a regular user of cannabis, it was totally unrealistic to think that we could.  The overwhelming vote in favor of the extra-constitutional sales tax surcharge reflects that fact, and voters' lack of access to unbiased information.  Until the sales tax surcharges can be repealed, at least the revenue should be spent on something productive -- not everything the State does is a waste of time and money, but a grant program to give cops more money trying to bust people with cannabis leaving Colorado very clearly is.  There is no indication whatsoever that the People want to give the cops any of the revenue from cannabis in order to bust more Coloradans for cannabis, and some good reason to suspect otherwise.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase "Because TABOR requires  ..."


LOL! ... the vast majority of the idiots who voted for A64 didn't even read it, much less comprehend what it proposed ... and you expect they have any clue or concept about TABOR ?


LOL!


The PEOPLE have SPOKEN !! -- they OVERWHELMINGLY agreed to "tax the shit" out of marijuana.


Obey the Will of the Voters!!

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay  Try reading that very short quote with comprehension -- the People did not authorize sales tax surcharges in the Constitution; not in November of 2012, and not in November of 2013.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase  "Proposition AA was not what the People authorized in the Constitution"


LOL! ... Prop AA is EXACTLY what The People of Colorado authorized ... via their OVERWHELMING support and passage of it during the free and democratic election.


Only a Political IDIOT would have been brain-dead enough to think that -- after incessantly promoting marijuana as a "cash cow" to be slaughtered upon, and in exchange for, legalization -- that those millions of voters who were continuously baited with pro-pot propaganda containing wildly absurd and inflated promises of massive tax windfalls would not actually expect and vote for those tax revenues.


Stupid Stoners = Political FAIL!


Myopic Blowback is a Bitch, ain't it?

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay  Because TABOR requires that the General Assembly submit all new taxes to a vote of the People, it is reasonable to infer that Amendment 64 required that the GA refer an initiative asking for the excise, which it did; Proposition AA did not fulfill the intent of the Amendment however, in that voters were denied the opportunity to vote for the tax they authorized and against those proposed by the GA.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase  ... there is nothing in A64 about "asking for an excise tax" ... A64 declares -- unequivocally -- that the legislature SHALL IMPLEMENT an EXCISE Tax starting at up to 15% then increasing without limit in future years, with a clearly implied minimum target revenue of $40 MILLION / year.


You can thank the IDIOT AUTHORS of A64 for deliberately and explicitly putting those words into the Colorado constitution.

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