Marijuana: Ex-Bronco Supports Plan to Turn Women's Prison Into Pot Factory

Keep Westword Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Denver and help keep the future of Westword free.

A women's correctional facility in Brush closed in 2010. But it could reopen soon -- as a retail marijuana grow, shorthanded by the media as a "pot factory."

Problem: Brush currently has a moratorium on marijuana businesses. But the city council could lift that ban after a town hall meeting tonight -- and Nick Erker, the man behind the proposal, is hoping a sales campaign and a pitch from a popular former Denver Bronco will help him convince officials to give him a chance.

See also: Marijuana: $24.7 Million in Recreational Pot, Edibles and Concentrates Sold in June

Erker reportedly bought the shuttered prison in March for $150,000. Now, under the name of his company, Colorado Farm Products, he's pushing the idea of turning the facility into a cannabis operation he predicts will generate millions in revenue and create dozens of new jobs.

Here's one of his posted pitches:

The Sales Tax Collections and Disbursements for June 2014 are in. Colorado collected more than $2,000,000 in retail sales tax in the month of June with more than $360,000 going back to the communities that generated the taxes. Lets not spend another day missing out on this opportunity and start bringing this money home to Brush!

There's definitely opposition to the proposal, as documented in the 7News report on view below. After all, Brush -- which prints its name as "Brush!" in most of its promotional material -- is a conservative community that was just named an All-American City.

To counter such trepidation, Erker called in some star power in the person of Joel Dreessen, a Colorado State standout who was a member of the Denver Broncos until just a few weeks ago; he was cut in late July.

Here's Erker's intro and postscript to Dressen's letter of support:

We have some exciting news.... Received a letter today from a close friend and former Denver Bronco, Joel Dreessen:

"I want to offer my support to Nick and the City of Brush! I certainly think it is a great opportunity to produce jobs and revenue for the city. As a kid who grew up in a small town and loves to see Morgan County thrive, I like this opportunity. The voters of the State of Colorado have already determined marijuana to be a legal business. Nick is a great leader and I certainly hope the City of Brush! takes this opportunity to pioneer a brand new industry. "

Joel Dreessen

Please make sure to keep spreading the word to your friends and neighbors and make sure to contact your City Council and let them hear your support. They want to hear from you!

They'll get that chance tonight, when the Brush City Council is set to host a town hall-style meeting on the topic. Afterward, council members could say yea or nay to Erker's notion or decide to put it up to a vote of the local citizenry this November.

Look below to see the aforementioned 7News report about this evening's get-together.

Send your story tips to the author, Michael Roberts.

Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.