After six months of meetings, the Social Consumption Advisory Committee, tasked with implementing Initiative 300, has finalized rules and regulations for social consumption.
Businesses interested in allowing patrons to consume marijuana in Designated Consumption Areas (DCA) must pay a $2,000 application fee and show that their DCAs will comply with the Colorado Clean Indoor Air Act and the Odor Control Plan. Applicants must submit to a criminal background check. A public hearing will be held within thirty days of a business submitting its DCA application.
Businesses must also implement a security plan and train employees on how to avoid underage consumption and prevent over-intoxication and driving under the influence. If a business plans to allow vaping, it will need to have a ventilation plan, as well.
Patrons will have to provide government-issued IDs to access DCAs, which must be restricted from street view. Businesses must also provide evidence of community support of their DCAs, a pillar of Initiative 300, which Denver voters approved last year. Venues with DCAs must fall outside of 1,000 feet of schools, childcare establishments, alcohol- or drug-treatment facilities, and city-owned recreation centers and outdoor pools.
Proximity restrictions were covered at length in the first social-consumption meeting and touched on again throughout the process. The committee was concerned about keeping consumption away from children but did not want to make the constraints too restrictive.
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Businesses can hang a sign inside the DCA that identifies the location as such, but most other forms of advertising are prohibited. Advertisements cannot be visible from any street, sidewalk or park.
Special-event permits will last no more than ten days. The city will not allow a cannabis-consumption special-event permit at an event that also has a special-event liquor permit.
Now the draft regulations head to a public hearing, tentatively scheduled for July 15. If and when they are finalized, businesses can start applying for DCAs.