Dear Stoner: Are Dispensaries Scanning IDs Now?

Dear Stoner: I recently stopped in at Euflora on the 16th Street Mall, and they wanted to scan my driver’s license. I’ve been there before, and they never did that. I’m clearly over 21 and not buying enough to make it matter if I live in state or not. (For the record, I’m a sixty-plus Colorado native.) They told me that every shop does it, and that it’s how they check to make sure a license is legit; the guy at the door basically said it’s the law. But that’s not what I’ve experienced at any other shop; they just look at the license. What’s the deal?
Timid Toker

Dear Timid: Although we’ve never encountered a scanner before, we have found confusion over how to handle IDs. On January 1, 2014, the day that recreational sales began, we waited in line for a while at Annie’s in Central City — only to find when we reached the front of that line that staffers were putting ID information into their system — reportedly to prevent someone from buying more than one ounce from the company in a day. Annie’s said the information was purged every 24 hours, but it still seemed a bit strange to us.

So did this report on Euflora. We’d been to the shop on the mall twice before reviewing it in January and hadn’t had anyone scan our ID — but we’d had concerns about other Euflora moves, including the fact that this all-recreational shop still advertised as a medical marijuana dispensary for months until we called them out on it in our review. When we checked, we found that Euflora is indeed now scanning IDs — not because the state requires it, but because Aurora does, and since Euflora now has a store in Aurora that uses the same security crew, the owners wanted the rules to be the same at both places.

Here’s the applicable Aurora policy: “For retail marijuana stores, the business shall verify the proof of age of every person entering the business with an electronic identification scanner. An electronic identification scanner is a device that is capable of quickly and reliably confirming the validity of an identification using computer processes.” That’s a lot more strict than state law, which simply says that a shop needs to give the ID a visual inspection, the way a bartender or bouncer would.

With all of the tourists and street kids on 16th Street, we can kind of see why Euflora might want to scan — but we can also see why it makes people nervous. We’re not paranoid, but we’d rather keep our personal information to ourselves. We caught up with Euflora co-owner Jamie Perino (yes, Dana Perino is her cousin), who says that if a customer is squeamish, the 16th Street store should be able to verify the ID with a visual check — but the customer will have to request it. Firmly.

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William Breathes
Contact: William Breathes