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img_2179 (1)Jacqueline Collins

As the recognized uses of medical marijuana expand, more traditional research foundations are becoming interested in the possibilities of pot. On March 6 and 7, the Parkinson’s Foundation will host its first-ever conference on medical marijuana…in Denver.

According to the 62-year-old organization, the conference will address potential risks and benefits of treating Parkinson’s disease with MMJ by bringing together “a diverse group of experts from academia, clinics, industry, government and the Parkinson’s community to establish a consensus on medical marijuana use in PD.”

5903615.0Brandon Marshall

“Look at the butt on that,” said Harry.

“He must work out,” Lloyd replied.

This iconic conversation from Dumb and Dumber marked the moment that Harry and Lloyd arrived in Aspen, but that might sound something more like “look at the bud on that” during this week’s fun at Aspen Gay Ski Week.

Why the change in dialogue? The 2019 edition AGSW has sizable support from Colorado’s cannabis industry.

mason_jar_spring_dabbing-collins-2018 (1)Jacqueline Collins

A recent report from a Colorado organization devoted to keeping children away from marijuana advocates for potency limits on cannabis products, which continue to get stronger and stronger.

“This is very different from marijuana in the 1980s,” says Rachel O’Bryan, co-founder of Smart Colorado, whose mission statement notes that the outfit “engages and informs Coloradans on the risks that marijuana poses to youth.” As a result, she maintains, “it’s a fundamentally different game.”

captiol-marshall2015 (1)Brandon Marshall

The City of Denver’s marijuana conviction expungement program is online and ready to roll, according to the mayor’s office as well as the district and city attorneys, who collectively announced the news today, January 9.

Dubbed “Turn Over a New Leaf,” the campaign took a year and multiple city departments to implement and aims to dismiss and expunge thousands of convictions for marijuana crimes that are no longer illegal as of 2012, when Coloradans approved recreational marijuana.

women.vaping.marijuana.jacqueline.collinsJacqueline Collins

Since 2013, the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area, a federally funded law-enforcement organization, has been issuing highly critical, persistently biased reports about the impact of marijuana legalization in Colorado.

But beyond a few scattered stories and a brief reference in U.S. Attorney Bob Troyer’s unexpectedly strident September 28 anti-pot op-ed in the Denver Post, the group’s latest salvo, released this month, has gotten comparatively little traction, especially compared to its earliest offerings.

the_green_solution_collins20171215_003 (1)Jacqueline Collins

Although cannabis and Colorado are inextricably linked in the minds of many outsiders, most of the state still bans pot businesses, according to new data from the state Marijuana Enforcement Division. Even so, over 550,000 pounds of cannabis were harvested throughout the first half of 2018.

While possession and personal cultivation were legalized throughout Colorado after voters approved Amendment 64 in 2012, the measure also gave towns and counties the right to ban dispensaries, commercial growing operations and other licensed pot businesses within their borders. So far, most of Colorado is still declining the green rush.

stoned.driving.anthony.cameraAnthony Camera

Recent Colorado Department of Transportation figures show that stoned-driving fatalities went down from 2016 to 2017 for those over the legal intoxication limit but up in fatal crashes involving drivers who tested positive for any marijuana in their system, whether above the line or under it. Such mixed results are typical according to a new report, which acknowledges that getting firm answers about the risks involved with driving high remains an enormous challenge.

And there are plenty of reasons why.

smoking.driving.file.photo.800Thinkstock file photo

The number of fatalities involving at least one driver over the legal limit for marijuana impairment in Colorado went down from 2016 to 2017. However, such fatalities are up during the same period for those testing positive for cannabis use at levels either above or below that limit. And the inconsistencies in regard to the collection of the information makes the scope of the issue unclear.

Those are among the revelations contained in new data from the Colorado Department of Transportation. But while CDOT spokesperson Sam Cole acknowledges that its digits leave plenty of room for interpretation, he doesn’t see any ambiguity when it comes to the bottom line.

nuvolution-foundersCourtesy of Anne Marie Doyle

Many young cannabis entrepreneurs and companies are nurtured by Colorado’s pot-industry incubators, but nonprofits that focus on the plant haven’t received anywhere near the same attention.

Filing for federal tax-exempt status for a cannabis-related nonprofit tends to scare a lot of people away, so nonprofits haven’t seen the same windfall as cannabis entities in other sectors. The regulatory worries don’t end there, either, thanks to laws banning cannabis samples and consumption at public events and other strict regulations unique to legal pot. Even in Denver, pot nonprofits struggle to find a safe space in which to operate and grow.

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