Colorado has recently passed new legislation that puts tighter restrictions on medical marijuana dispensaries. Costly new licensing fees and restrictions on who can own and operate dispensaries are among the changes included in the new laws.
According to a Daily Finance article, more than 100,000 Coloradans are registered medical marijuana users, and the industry has only continued to grow over the years with roughly 1,110 medical marijuana dispensaries now operating in the state. But some say that things are have gotten out of control and need to be reigned in.
The growth in the number of dispensaries in Colorado, which has permitted medical marijuana use for the past ten years, is astounding. Shops have been popping up all over the place as people from all walks of life see the potential for a profitable new business venture.
This growth has caused municipalities such as Aurora, a suburb just east of Denver, to consider banning dispensaries altogether. Some residents simply do not want marijuana dispensaries on every street corner.
But according to Drug Enforcement Agency estimates, nearly 20 percent of the state’s dispensaries may be shut down as a result of the new legislation’s restrictions barring convicted felons from operating them. And all dispensary owners will now have to pay thousands of dollars in fees to obtain licenses to operate.
The new restrictions will help weed out some of the bad players in the industry while allowing for legitimate dispensaries to operate legally.
In addition to medical use, medical marijuana dispensaries can be beneficial economically, as they provide a new tax base for local municipalities.