Colorado Amendment 64: Legalized Marijuana-Rules, Laws and Regulations
Posted by Marijuana Doctors on 11/13/2012 in Medical Marijuana Legalization
What is Amendment 64 of Colorado?
On Tuesday, November 8th 2012, the voters of Colorado passed Amendment 64-an amendment to Article 17 of the Colorado state constitution to adopt a progressive marijuana policy. Amendment 64 will allow adults 21 years & older to possess up to an ounce of marijuana for private consumption. Amendment 64 allows Colorado adults to grow up to six marijuana plants in a private, enclosed locked area, however only 3 can be mature flowering plants at any one time.
In summary, Amendment 64 will establish a legal framework in which marijuana is regulated and taxed similarly to alcohol and tobacco. It will allow for the cultivation, processing and sale of industrial hemp by licensed business operators under Colorado state law. Amendment 64 will eliminate all criminal penalties for personal possession and use of marijuana of up to one (1) ounce of marijuana and allow for up to 6 marijuana plants for private home use only.
When will Colorado’s Amendment 64 legalize marijuana?
The voters of Colorado have spoken-Amendment 64 passed with a 55-45 percent margin. But marijuana is not legal just yet. The law should take effect when the governor ratifies the ballot before or on December 23, 2012. Once Amendment 64 of Colorado is ratified, possession and small-scale growing operations (6 plants-3 immature and 3 mature plants) would become effective immediately.
Colorado Legalized Marijuana Rules, Laws and Regulations
While the law removes criminal penalties for private adult consumption, the law does not allow for public consumption. The law does not allow Colorado state residents to possess more than one ounce, own more than 3 flowering mature plants or sell marijuana to other adults or those under 18 years old. Consumption of marijuana would be permitted in a manner similarly to alcohol with equivalent offenses written for driving under the influence. We know that Colorado’s Amendment 64 is in its infancy and there are still many questions to be answered. The Colorado legislation body is still busy defining the full extent of the laws. Colorado citizens are likely to wait months before any specific information is available.
Colorado Legalized Marijuana and Federal Law
Even though marijuana will be legalized under Colorado state law, it is still illegal under Federal law, specifically under the Controlled Substances Act. The federal government’s enforcement of its marijuana polices could disrupt the efforts of the state of Colorado to legalize marijuana and implement its laws.
However, the citizens of Colorado have spoken and they wish to have legal access to marijuana. It would be difficult and wasteful for the federal government to expend its limited resources paid for by the people to crackdown on legalized marijuana in Colorado. However many proponents of legalization say that they don’t believe federal agents will interfere in states that have legalized marijuana. This is also reassuring when we know that the Justice Department has not immediately challenged state law. Its is believed in this writer’s opinion that it is in everyone’s interest for the current administration to help Colorado and Washington write its new rules. It’s a learning experience, an experiment in state marijuana control that we all can learn from.
David Sirota, a politics columnist and pro-marijuana advocate has created a petition requesting the president to support a federal law to protect marijuana legalization in Colorado and Washington and any other states that pass pro-marijuana legalization legislation.
The petitions reads: “Citizens in Colorado and Washington overwhelmingly voted to legalize, regulate and tax marijuana in similar fashion as the more hazardous substance, alcohol, is already legalized, regulated and taxed. We request the president support a federal law requiring the federal government to protect – rather than undermine or overturn – these state laws and similar laws that other states pass in the future. Specifically, we request the president to support a pending congressional proposal that would amend the federal pre-emption section of the Controlled Substances Act (section 903) to exempt from the act any state provisions “relating to marijuana.””
Colorado Legalized Marijuana and Commercial Retail Stores
Amendment 64 of Colorado will also create legal marijuana establishments such as retail stores, cultivation facilities, product manufacturing and testing facilities which will be regulated by the Department of Revenue. Under the measure, the Department of Revenue will license marijuana establishments at the state level. The department will be accepting and processing applications on October 1, 2013.
The legislation also states that an excise tax will be set on commercial marijuana. No word on the tax rate, but it shall be no more than 15%. The amendment also requires that the first $40 million in revenue raised annually shall be created to the public school capital construction assistance fund.
Colorado Medical Marijuana and Cannabis Legalization
Amendment 64 does not change or affect any existing medical marijuana laws for patients, caregivers, and medical marijuana dispensaries. The Colorado legalized marijuana tax will not apply to medical marijuana. Colorado Medical Marijuana Cards are still in high demand because medical marijuana qualified patients can possess up to 2 ounces of marijuana compared to the 1 ounce limit for recreational use. Medical marijuana patients benefit from this legislation because they don’t have to travel as often to purchase their medicine and instead can focus on their healing. If you are looking for a doctor for an evaluation such as colorado marijuana doctors, consider a colorado springs marijuana doctor like OMM Alternatives.