Amendment 64 Officially Becomes Law; Gov. Hickenlooper Signs Voter-Approved Initiative
Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper on Monday signed an executive order formalizing Amendment 64 as part of the state Constitution and officially making the limited personal use, possession, and limited home-growing of marijuana legal for adults 21 and older.
The governor had until January 5 to sign the executive order, but he did so only four days after Colorado Secretary of State Scott Gessler certified the results from the November 6 general election.
"Voters were loud and clear on Election Day," Gov. Hickenlooper said, reports Patrick Malone at The Coloradoan. "We will begin working immediately with the General Assembly and state agencies to implement Amendment 64."
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The sale and public consumption of marijuana remain illegal; the Colorado Legislature plans to address issues including the taxation, regulation and distribution of marijuana during the upcoming legislative session.
The governor also signed an Executive Order establishing a task force on the Implementation of Amendment 64 consisting of various government officials and other stakeholders, which will provide recommendations to the Legislature on how to establish a legal market for businesses to cultivate and sell marijuana to adults.
The task force's meetings will be public, and its recommendations are due on the governor's desk by February 28.
Amendment 64, the initiative to regulate marijuana like alcohol, was approved by 55 percent of Colorado voters in last month's election.
"This is a truly historic day," said Mason Tvert, director of communications at the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP) and one of the two official proponents of Amendment 64. "From this day forward, adults in Colorado will no longer be punished for the simple use and possession of marijuana."
We applaud Gov. Hickenlooper for issuing this declaration in a timely fashion, so that adult possession arrests end across the state immediately," Tvert said. "We look forward to working with the governor's office and many other stakeholders on the implementation of Amendment 64.
"We are certain that this will be a successful endeavor, and Colorado will become a model for other states to follow," Tvert said.
Gov. Hickenlooper's official announcement is available by clicking here.