Colorado: Cannabis Chamber Warns Against Overregulation of Edible Products
The Colorado Cannabis Chamber of Commerce on Wednesday urged against a culture of dangerous potential overregulation of legal cannabis edibles in Colorado.
At the HB13-1361 and HB14-1366 Work Group Meeting on August 11, the Marijuana Enforcement Division (MED) of the Department of Revenue (DOR) discussed with various stakeholders the creation of new rules surrounding all edible cannabis products.
The Chamber also stands behind the consensus at the meeting regarding standard measurement procedures and the need for public education to always be the number one priority.
However, many proposed new regulations on edible products could create a strong negative impact not only on legal, licensed, compliant marijuana business throughout Colorado, but also on public safety for adults and children alike, according to the Chamber.
“The more we encourage overregulation, the more we risk pushing marijuana activity back onto the black market and into home kitchens without oversight or any regulation whatsoever,” said Tyler Henson, president of the Cannabis Chamber.
Furthermore the Chamber announced it is "disappointed in the letter that was signed by many of our state legislators that asked MED to ignore the rule of law and create rules based on false propaganda that has been perpetuated by prohibitionists."
“The letter that was signed by 85 state legislators is troubling," Henson said. "The letter is riddled with misleading information and asks the MED to create rules based off intent rather than what the bill mandates the state to enact.”
The Chamber has spoken to a dozen legislators whose name appeared on the letter; all said that they did not recall signing the letter, or did not understand that the MED would take such a drastic measure towards inhibiting the cannabis industry.
“In both rulemaking and legislation, we must make sure not to violate the will of the people of Colorado," said Representative Steve Lebsock of Thorton. "And, violating the spirit of Amendment 20 and Amendment 64 is not an option.”
“One ounce means one ounce, period," Lebsock said. "We cannot change the State Constitution by promulgating rules. I trust the people of Colorado. Its time we listen to the people and stop attempting to make legislation or rule making which attempts to reverse the will of the people.”
While these activists and regulators have excellent intentions, mandating excessive stamping and packaging requirements won’t stop irresponsible adults allowing products to accidentally end up in the hands of kids, according to the Chamber.
“You cannot regulate common sense,” Henson said.
The Cannabis Chamber sees many of these proposed rules bearing an end result of increased cost, closed businesses, and decreased tax revenue – but not better public safety.
“What everyone heard and saw this week from so many innovative businesses and various manufacturers is that the cannabis industry is privately taking the initiative and leading the way on proper, effective solutions for the edibles market here in Colorado,” said Henson.
“We applaud the legislators who did not sign this letter for seeing what its true intent was," Henson said. "The legislators took a stand to adhere and protect the constitution and we will work with these legislators to educate our state legislature and continue toward a positive and prosperous future.”