Hickenlooper Defends Recreational Marijuana; Legislature Mulls Social Pot Clubs

The State Senate is mulling several bills concerning marijuana and marijuana businesses.

One of the biggest bills is the social pot club bill that would allow businesses to allow marijuana use where the city or county has authorized them.

As the federal government is debating what it is going to do with recreational marijuana, there is talk of states seeing greater enforcement of federal laws.

It’s leaving a big question mark as to what this means for the billion-dollar industry in Colorado.

“Certainly, we’ve been thinking about it and trying to figure out what our choices are,” Gov. John Hickenlooper said on “The O’Reilly Factor” on Wednesday night. “You know, I opposed it. I was openly against it. And you know, 55-45 of our voters put it in our Constitution.

“I took an oath to support our Constitution. So I’m in a funny position where I’ve got to try and make this work. You know, we’ve made a lot of progress.”

But O’Reilly questioned that.

“A flood of homeless people, poor people came to Colorado because they have easy access to the intoxicant,” he told Hickenlooper. “Downtown Denver, there’s a lot of people stoned. Morning to night because they can get this stuff. “And I think that’s what the attorney general is talking about.”

Added Hickenlooper: “To be clear, we have the No. 1 economy in the country. When you’re growing that fast, you have all kinds of homelessness. We had that long before we legalized marijuana.”

State lawmakers are looking at giving local governments more flexibility when it comes to recreational marijuana by allowing social pot clubs.

A bill would create a one-year pilot program of “bring your own” marijuana clubs. They would be smoke-friendly businesses similar to cigar bars where people can smoke marijuana.

Colorado law doesn’t ban or permit marijuana clubs but many opened as tourists said they needed somewhere to legally smoke.

The marijuana clubs wouldn’t be allowed to sell pot or serve alcohol. And the bill would also allow any jurisdiction to ban them altogether.

The statewide measure passed the Senate business committee and now moves to the full Senate.

reported by Fox 31 Denver

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