As the clock hit 6 p.m. on Monday, November 6, at the Ritz-Carlton in downtown Denver, some of Colorado’s most prominent advocates of recreational cannabis legalization celebrated the fifth anniversary of Amendment 64’s passage. Members of the Marijuana Policy Project, one of the country’s biggest proponents for legalizing cannabis, enjoyed the night as they spoke about their past victories and the challenges to come both in Colorado and elsewhere.
Browsing: Say what?
Shortly after Amendment 64 passed on November 6, 2012, the flood of questions began. How much pot can I buy from a dispensary at one time? How many plants can I grow in my house? Why do I want to eat half my body weight in fried chicken after I smoke? To answer all of these inquiries effectively, Westword created a new position: the Stoner.
Though he doesn’t look like the sharpest tool in the shed, our Stoner has been here for all of your cannabis questions since it was legalized recreationally. Questions have ranged far and wide in the five years since voters spoke up (and toked up); keep reading for links to the the ten most interesting, relevant and ridiculous we’ve received:
To help combat the risk of driving while under the influence of cannabis, three organizations have again partnered on a program offering ride-sharing discounts. Lyft, the Colorado Department of Transportation and the Marijuana Industry Group have revved up their collaborative 320 Movement program, offering monthly ride discounts through April 2018.
The effects of legalized cannabis on Colorado are still being debated, but the state’s top health official believes that we’ve been pretty responsible about this pot thing. Dr. Larry Wolk has been the chief medical officer and executive director of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment since 2013, a period that includes the state’s implementation of regulated adult-use cannabis in 2014, and he’s confident enough about the process that he’s telling other states and even countries that not only has the sky not fallen in Colorado, but we’re actually doing all right.
There’s a reason most cannabis cultivations in Colorado are in warehouses: People are scared. Afraid of the elements, pests and the unknowns of farming under the sun, most growers prefer to stay inside, taking control of their environments and nurturing their delicate crops with extreme care. Even if growers wanted to venture outdoors, many local governments in densely populated areas, like the City of Denver’s, ban outdoor operations. Travel up to the mountains, however, and you’ll find a tougher breed of both plant and grower.
Colorado’s legal weed boom has created an influx of business for more than just dispensaries. The state leads the country in the number of top ancillary businesses connected to the cannabis industry, but another industry with long-standing ties to the plant has also been enjoying the benefits: fast food.
Colorado’s decision to legalize recreational cannabis has taken the blame for several changes to the state’s rapidly changing landscape, specifically in Denver. Pot has been accused for the rise in population, the rise in homelessness and the rise in housing costs…and now one study believes it has found a solid connection to the increased cost of homes.