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Marijuana: Joint committee to use task force recommendations to iron out Colorado pot laws

Colorado legislators have formed a body to help craft legislation based on recommendations of the governor-appointed Amendment 64 task force, which wrapped up February 28 and released its findings this week. The Joint Select Committee on the Implementation of the Amendment 64 Task Force Recommendations (no, not that kind of joint) is made up of five senators and five representatives from both sides of the aisle. They will take the task force's suggestions and lay them out as a proposed set of laws for legislators to approve or deny.

The group is scheduled to meet twice -- first this Friday at 1:30 p.m. at the State Capitol, and again on March 22. Committee members hope to complete their review of the recommendations by March 29, then propose bills that would enable the implementation of Amendment 64.

In a statement, Representative Dan Pabon, a Democrat who represents Denver and is chairing the committee, says, "The people of Colorado have ordered us to set up a system to promote public safety, protect our children and regulate recreational marijuana. A select committee is the most efficient, most transparent way to draft a bill that deals with the many, many facets of implementing Amendment 64."

The select-committee format was most recently used in the 2011 congressional-redistricting debate.

The other House Democrats on the committee with Pabon are representatives Jonathan Singer and Jenise May; Democratic senators Cheri Jahn, Gail Schwartz and Jessie Ulibarri have also been appointed. In another statement, Jahn says, "This select committee is a continuing effort on the part of the state to implement Amendment 64 in a way that provides an effective road map for businesses, promotes public health, and addresses numerous policy issues relative to this new law."

The remaining four members will be chosen by the minority leaders in the House and Senate.

More from our Marijuanaarchive: "4/20 at CU-Boulder: Legal action in attempt to block campus closure?" and "Marijuana: Copenhagen to import pot from Colorado?"