It looks like at long last Colorado may get legally sanctioned cannabis clubs. House Bill 1258 was passed last week by the state house. HB 1258 would allow for individual dispensaries to open their own “tasting rooms” onsite. So, why are so many less than thrilled about the prospect?
HB1258 does not specifically allow for cannabis clubs as people have been hoping for. In fact, it does not even allow smoking in the “tasting rooms”. Only vaping and sampling cannabis infused products would be allowed in these rooms under the law. This bill does have the backing of the largest dispensary owners and groups in the state.
Some of the people displeased are those who run the smaller dispensaries in the state, fearing that they would be left behind. As it stands right now, the dispensaries that would be best equipped to add on their own tasting rooms are the larger ones.
Cannabusinesses who are trying to become established would most likely not be able to comply with the new law. Andrew Mieure of Top Shelf Budtending had this to say about the bill, “What will happen is that only current dispensary owners will be able to open a social consumption establishment, which is essentially like the liquor store also owning the nightclub.”
Dispensaries that stand behind the current bill are larger chains such as Terrapin Care Station, LivWell, Native Roots, and the Marijuana Industry Group. It should be noted here that the Marijuana Industry Group consists of 117 out of 315 cannabis business licenses, including retail establishments.
Earlier this month, a Colorado state senate bill that would have allowed for the establishment of cannabis clubs, along with onsite sales was rejected in committee. This bill would have been a big step forward towards normalizing and regulating cannabis clubs in the state of Colorado, and may have served as an example for other legal states. Sadly, it looks like progress will have to come about much more slowly.
Representative Jonathan Singer (D-Longmont), the main sponsor of the bill basically believes that in this case, incrementalism is the best way “to get [social consumption] out there and on people’s radar so that they see that it’s not as scary as it seems,” he says.
Other critics of the bill fear that some provisions will lead to a higher number of DUIs, particularly the parts of the bill that allow the purchasing of 3.5 grams of flower, 1 gram of concentrates and 10 mg of edibles.
How will this bill affect smaller cannabusinesses in the future? Will it eventually lead to cannabis clubs? I guess we will find out.
Image Source: Colorado Springs Independent
Will this bill eventually lead to cannabis clubs, or will it lead to a monopoly by larger cannabis companies? Tell us in the comments!