In 2020, Coloradans will have more options for consuming marijuana in public
Starting on Jan. 1, House Bill 1230 will allow two entirely new types of businesses in Colorado: tasting rooms that can sell cannabis flower and cannabis products, and “marijuana hospitality establishments,” which can’t sell cannabis on-site but allow full use of the plant (including on tour buses).
Officials in Denver and other cities have not yet declared overarching stances on the issue, but the laws are likely to encourage a new green rush — once businesses meet certain standards.
The flipside of allowing anyone to apply for a license is that the state has granted ample discretion to individual municipalities, allowing them to decide where and how these new businesses operate, if at all. Application fees range from $1,000 for a hospitality business to $5,000 for a retail hospitality and sales operation. Once granted, operators are barred from holding a liquor license for the same business.
“We have a rich history of home rule in Colorado, and this legislation is no different,” said Shannon Gray, spokeswoman for Colorado’s Marijuana Enforcement Division. “It’s up to local jurisdictions to decide if they want this within their borders.”
The new rules, signed into law by Gov. Jared Polis in May, include House Bill 1234, which allows for commercial home delivery of cannabis. But the biggest deal is undoubtedly the consumption rules. Ever since Amendment 64 legalized statewide retail sales, growth and possession of pot in 2014, residents and especially tourists have been forced to find creative ways to consume their weed in the absence of any legal, public option.
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