Denver entrepreneurs get recreational marijuana licenses
DENVER — The first batch of Denver businesses approved to sell recreational marijuana got their licenses Friday, with the owners mugging for pictures and saying they never thought they'd see the day when they'd get a permit to sell pot.
Applause broke out and cameras whirred when the first license was issued from the city's Department of Excise and Licenses. The city awarded eight licenses for retail shops, 30 licenses for pot growers and four licenses for makers of cannabis-infused products such as pot brownies.
One businessman joked about getting arrested for having a joint at a 1971 Black Sabbath concert. Others shared hugs and stories about marijuana's route to legalization.
“I think it's about time that adults can imbibe in marijuana,” said Donald Andrews of one of the eight shops, LoDo Wellness Center in downtown Denver.
The licensed sellers went through a state and local licensing process that included public hearings to ask neighbors about shop locations. Owners also underwent more than a dozen fire and building inspections for each shop.
“It's been a grueling process, but we're finally here,” said Justin Jones, owner of Dank Colorado, a retail shop.
Recreational pot for adults over 21 has been legal in Colorado for more than a year, but retail sales of the drug aren't allowed until 8 a.m. on Jan. 1. Washington state, the only other state to allow recreational pot use by adults, plans to have stores open by late spring.
Denver is one of 19 municipalities and seven counties in Colorado that will allow retail sales of recreational pot.
Only existing medical marijuana businesses are allowed to make the transition to recreational sales. The licensed shops were handed red posters Friday and stacks of fliers instructing pot customers on marijuana limits, including the fact that users can't consume pot in public, drive high, or take pot out of state.
“These are big businesses that have been operating in good standing in our city for a long time,” said Amber Miller, spokeswoman for Denver Mayor Michael Hancock.
Colorado has approved 348 marijuana business licenses, of which a hundred are pending in Denver.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Obama defers deportations for 4 million illegals
- Former Va. Sen. Webb launches presidential exploratory committee
- Ex-coal exec pleads not guilty in W.Va. mine blast
- NSA: China thefts could lead to attack
- E-cigarettes cut cravings, study finds
- Finally, a man walks like a gecko in scientists’ lab
- ‘Sex purchasers’ publicly shamed
- NYC show features Cezanne’s missus
- Obama orders review of hostage policy, but won’t reconsider U.S. refusal to pay ransoms
- House Republican floats plan to defund immigration order but avoid shutdown
- Oklahoma City lawman to stand trial for allegedly sexually assaulting 13 women