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.
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.
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.
In May, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued a damning preliminary report about the late-2017 death of forty-year-old Loveland Ski Area employee Adam Lee, who suffered crushing chest injuries while working on the Magic Carpet, a motorized beltway used to teach kids how to ski.
The document essentially characterizes Adam as an innocent victim. But his widow, Erika Lee, says Pinnacol, the company that administers workers’ compensation payments in Colorado, is trying to withhold half of the money she should be receiving to support her three kids because Adam’s autopsy revealed high levels of THC in his blood.
It’s never a good idea to smoke weed in front of a police officer, let alone get behind the wheel right after — but that’s exactly what people were doing with the Adams County Sheriff’s Office on Monday, July 16.
During this truly unique event, Adams County sheriff’s deputies invited participants to drink beers, smoke joints and then test their driving skills in order to determine how impaired they really were. The challenge was the brainchild of cannabis consulting firm Dacorum Strategies, which partnered with the Adams County Sheriff’s Office, Lyft and Colorado NORML to raise awareness about driving while impaired.
What a difference four years makes. In 2014, Oklahoma and Nebraska were suing Colorado in federal court for this state’s decision to legalize recreational marijuana, but now the Sooner State is starting to catch up to Colorado’s affinity for the plant — and in some cases, even surpass it.
On Tuesday, June 26, voters approved Question 788, making Oklahoma the thirtieth state in the country to legalize marijuana for medical purposes. The measure passed with 57 percent approval, and is being lauded by MMJ advocates for its broad-reaching nature. Unlike the large majority of states with MMJ programs (including Colorado), Oklahoma would allow doctors to prescribe marijuana for any condition they see fit.
A new analysis finds that while marijuana legalization has led to higher rates of cannabis consumption in Colorado and other states with similar laws, there’s no evidence that it’s fueling abuse of more addictive drugs, including heroin and cocaine.
That’s the conclusion of a just-issued report from LiveStories, which specializes in the analysis of civic data. LiveStories founder Adnan Mahmud summarizes the results like so: “We haven’t found any strong correlation that suggests increased marijuana use leads to increases in other substance abuse.”
The big news about teens and marijuana in Colorado is that there isn’t big news. Just-issued federal government statistics show that the rate of cannabis use among high school students in the state is slightly less than the national average and below the percentage of those who smoked pot before Colorado voters approved legal consumption for adults more than five years ago.
In the past, anti-weed groups that regularly call for the clock to be turned back in order to protect children have tried to spin positive or neutral numbers in a negative direction, and Marijuana Policy Project spokesperson Mason Tvert, among the main proponents of Amendment 64, the 2012 measure that legalized limited recreational sales for those 21 and over, expects much the same this time around.
An undercover study conducted by Denver Health found that a majority of Colorado dispensary employees — 69 percent — recommended that a pregnant woman use cannabis, Denver Health officials revealed today, May 9.
Researchers had two women conduct “mystery caller” phone conversations with employees at 400 dispensaries across the state, telling them that they were eight weeks pregnant and suffering from morning sickness. During the majority of those calls, the employees recommended the women use cannabis products.
To help remedy its well-publicized affordable-housing shortage, Mayor Michael Hancock wants to use a lifeline that mayors of most major cities don’t have: pot. On April 16, the city floated the idea of using $105 million in bonds from the Denver Housing Authority — a quasi-municipal corporation that provides housing for middle- and low-income families and individuals — to help cover a proposed $105 million surge in funding for affordable housing over the next five years.