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Medical Marijuana History in Boulder

Although the possession, use, and distribution of marijuana remains illegal under Federal law, the Colorado Medical Marijuana Amendment (Article XVIII, Section 14 of the Colorado Constitution) (“Amendment 20”), approved by Colorado voters in November 2000, authorizes the use of marijuana to alleviate certain debilitating medical conditions. Amendment 20 does not contain provisions regarding the lawful sale or distribution of medical marijuana. Additionally, there are no specific comprehensive regulations within the Boulder Revised Code (B.R.C.) that directly relate to the sale, consultation/treatment of patients, or cultivation/processing of medical marijuana.

  • November 2009: the Planning Board reviewed the regulatory options and made recommendations to the City Council.
  • November 2009: City council reviewed the recommendations and enacted interim land use regulations regarding medical marijuana businesses ( Ordinance 7707 ) through March 31, 2010 to allow additional time to study the issues surrounding medical marijuana businesses.
  • January 2010: Staff collected resident input regarding medical marijuana via Medical Marijuana Interim Ordinance Feedback report. Staff used the input received and various other other research sources to formulate a draft permanent regulations for board and council consideration.
  • February 18, 2010: Planning Board reviewed a draft of permanent regulations.
  • March 2, 2010: City Council extended the interim ordinance (7707) until the adoption of the final marijuana land use regulations.
  • May 18, 2010: City Council adopted Medical Marijuana Ordinance 7716 creating a comprehensive licensing system.
  • June 17, 2010: Ordinance 7716 went into effect.
  • August 2, 2010: Any medical marijuana related business that was not operating on or before Aug. 2, 2010, must have obtained a medical marijuana business license prior to opening.
  • August 31, 2010: Existing medical marijuana businesses (in operation on or before Aug. 2, 2010) must have submitted a medical marijuana business license application.
  • October 29, 2010: Existing medical marijuana businesses (in operation on or before June 17, 2010) in compliance with all applicable laws, including without limitation, obtained a sales and use tax license, and remitted sales and use taxes to the city.
  • February 1, 2011: City Council passed Ordinance 7780 amending Chapter 6-14 "Medical Marijuana"
  • August 29, 2011: Boulder completes medical marijuana business license reviews; launches inspections of appealing businesses
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