For Immediate Release
Colorado Nets $7.34M From Medical Marijuana Dispensary License Applications
Seeking Regulation and Legitimacy, More than 700 Apply for Licenses that Will Generate Millions in New Revenue for Colorado
DENVER - More
than 2,000 people in Colorado applied for licenses to run
state-regulated medical marijuana dispensaries, growing facilities or
related businesses before this weekend's application deadline, according
to state officials. In total, the state made $7.34 million from
application fees alone.
More than 700 applied specifically for
dispensary licenses, far exceeding the number expected by state
officials, who estimated that only half of the state's roughly 1,100
pre-existing dispensaries would apply for licenses. State officials will
now conduct thorough background checks on applicants before awarding
licenses, which are expected to generate additional millions in annual
revenue for Colorado.
"This outpouring of applications is another
sign of how willing and eager marijuana business owners are to be taxed,
regulated, and given equal treatment to other legitimate
establishments," said Steve Fox, director of government relations for
the Marijuana Policy Project. "By sensibly regulating its medical
marijuana industry, Colorado stands to gain untold millions in new
revenue while at the same time providing legal clarity and rational
oversight to what may soon be the largest regulated marijuana market in
In June, Colorado Governor Bill Ritter (D)
signed legislation designed to regulate the state's medical marijuana
industry through a system of local and state licenses. A state-licensed
medical marijuana program is up and running in New Mexico, and similar
programs will soon be operational in Rhode Island, Maine, New Jersey,
and Washington, D.C. - but the number of sanctioned dispensaries to be
allowed in each of those states is fewer than 10. Colorado's law will
authorize hundreds, and potentially more if future demand increases.
A Rasmussen telephone poll released May 15
showed that there is also plurality support among Colorado voters for
further expanding the state's marijuana laws. Forty-nine percent of
likely voters said they support taxing and regulating marijuana like
alcohol, with an additional 13 percent still undecided.
With more than 26,000 members and 100,000 e-mail subscribers nationwide, the Marijuana Policy Project is the largest marijuana policy reform organization in the United States. MPP believes that the best way to minimize the harm associated with marijuana is to regulate marijuana in a manner similar to alcohol. For more information, please visit http://MarijuanaPolicy.org.