Who’s up for a road trip to Denver? In the long haul of marijuana legalization, this progressive Colorado city is taking the lead. We can’t wait to see which businesses will be first to open their doors (of perception) to pot smoking on their premises. This is an exciting time for all of us as we watch how this civic experiment unfolds. As we see it, the social use permit there is a testing ground for the rest of us.
It’s been a lengthy process, but city officials have finally acquiesced to the will of the people and will allow businesses to apply for permits, essentially legalizing public pot consumption. They’ve recently released the guidelines for who can apply and how. The application fee for brick-and- mortar shops and event producers is $2,000. The city is accepting applications through August. The guidelines have just been released. Here’s the government doc, if you can grok legalese.
The voters of Denver have spoken. Initiative 300 is a pilot program that will be rolled out over the course of four years. We’re expecting to see lots of coffee shops and restaurants applying for these permits, as well as yoga studios, bookstores, and other businesses that hope to increase brand loyalty by opening up their spaces to weed smokers.
Dispensaries are prohibited from applying for a social use permit, as are bars. We have heard news of a loophole wherein one restaurant or bar can hold a permit for use after hours, for a special event, for example. Red Rocks will not be allowed a permit, either; not that that has stopped countless music lovers from appreciating the synergy of music and weed.
It’s an exciting time for those of us who want to bring cannabis use out of the shadows. We don’t want to break the law, forced to sneak around, to be perceived as sinister scofflaws that corrupt youth and destroy property value. We just want to live freely. Maybe we can bring this open-minded legislation to Tacoma. Perhaps one day in the not-too-distant future we will be able to smoke a joint while perusing books and petting Atticus and Herbert at King’s.
We have got to hit the road soon to check out Denver and meet like-minded folks smoking weed out in the open, enjoying marijuana legally, respectfully and responsibly, as we know it can be done. Let’s meet up at The Gallery to plan a cannabis journey East, and talk about what else we can do to bring reasonable laws into practice here in Washington and all across this green nation.
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