Just because Colorado legalized recreational pot last November with the passage of Amendment 64 doesn't mean that the rest of us can't share in on the fun.
Last week, the state marijuana task force recommended that regulations be established to permit tourists age 21 and up to purchase “party pot” as state residents of age are able to do.
The task force arrived at their conclusion based on the fact that A-64 states that all adults age 21-plus may use recreational weed – there is no verbiage in the amendment limiting usage to Coloradoans.
State Representative Dan Pabon (D-4th District), a member of the task force, explained his support for pot tourism in Colorado: "Imposing a residency requirement [to buy pot] would almost certainly create a black market for recreational marijuana in the state." Taking the black market out of the marijuana business was one of the primary reasons A-64 was passed in the first place.
To further prevent equally unscrupulous "tourists" from loading up on legal weed and selling it in a state that prohibits pot, the amount of marijuana that out-of-state residents are allowed to purchase could be limited – perhaps as low as an eighth (3.5 grams) per transaction.
Of course, even well-meaning tourists will not be able to transport any of their legal Colorado cannabis across state lines, so the task force additionally recommended that signs be installed at airports and borders to remind visitors of that unfortunate fact.
The task force also addressed still unresolved issues concerning the legality of smoking pot on open and visible residential porches and patios and whether an area must be entirely enclosed for cannabis cultivation (according to A-64, all cultivation must be done in a secure location unseen by the general public).
The task force will continue to debate and iron out these pending recommendations until the end of February, and then it's up to the Colorado Legislature and the state Dept of Revenue to ultimately determine the official A-64 regulations for the growing, selling, and usage of legal marijuana.
It'll be interesting to see how much Colorado tourism increases should visitors be able to legally purchase and smoke pot, something they once had to travel all the way to the Netherlands to experience.
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