Wake-Up Call: John Hickenlooper, Mayor of the (really) Mile High City

"Rocky Mountain High" is getting quite a work-out as national media outlets run stories on the booming medical marijuana business in Colorado. With both city and state officials talking about reining in the industry with new regulations, I put calls into both Governor Bill Ritter and Mayor John Hickenlooper on Monday, asking for their thoughts on this new, really green, really growing field.

I'm still waiting to hear back from the governor's office. But Hickenlooper, who first came to the public's attention as the ebullient owner of the Wynkoop Brewing Co., which specializes in pouring out legal substances, called back quickly with this:

"The voters in Denver overwhelmingly don't want to see marijuana be illegal," he said, referring both to the original 2000 vote that legalized medical marijuana in the state, and the 2005 and 2007 Denver ballot measures legalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana and setting up the Denver Marijuana Policy Review Panel. "A lot of the smartest people we know have great concerns about suddenly removing all limits. That's what the issue is going to distill down to. What are the appropriate limits?"

Especially when you're living in a town that's already labeled the Mile High City? Expect this topic to remain the toke of the town over the next few weeks.


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