Whether you are for it, or against it, Colorado voters have spoken, and Amendment 64 was passed on November 6, 2012.
So, what is legal under Amendment 64? The act now makes it lawful for a person 21 years of age, or older, to do the following:
1) Possess, use, display, purchase or transport one ounce or less of marijuana.
2) Possess, grow, process or transport up to six marijuana plants. However, only up to three of those plants may be mature, flowering plants. You are allowed to possess the marijuana produced by those plants on the premises where the plants were grown, provided that the growing takes place in an enclosed, locked space and is not made available for sale.
3) Give (not sell) an ounce or less of marijuana to a person who is 21 years old, or older.
4) Consume marijuana. However, this consumption cannot be done in the open, or publicly. And it cannot be done in a manner that endangers others.
5) And, finally, you can assist anyone who is 21 years of age, or older, in any of the acts described above.
There are still many actions that are considered illegal under Amendment 64. It is still a violation of Colorado law to drive under the influence of marijuana. You still cannot go into a medical marijuana dispensary and purchase medical marijuana without a medical marijuana license. And, it is still illegal for anyone under the age of 21 to use or possess marijuana, no matter the quantity.
For a complete list of what is prohibited under Amendment 64, and how it will work, please visit https://www.regulatemarijuana.org/s/regulate-marijuana-alcohol-act-2012.
Colorado’s Govenor has cautioned Colorado residents to not “break out the Cheetos” just yet. But he has reached out to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to discuss how the Justice Department will respond to the legalization of marijuana. “My sense is that it is unlikely the federal governemnt is going to allow states one by one to unilaterally decriminalize marijuana,” Hickenlooper said. However, he added, “You can’t argue with the will of the voters.”
Colorado’s Attorney General John Suthers joined with Govenor Hickenlooper in standing behind the will of the voters, and has stated that despite his personal opposition to the legalization of marijunana, he would work with the state to implement the new law.
All that being said, it is still a violation of federal law to possess, sell or use marijuna. Jeff Dorshner, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s office stated that the Justice Department still intends to enforce the federal law that makes all marijuana possession or sale a crime.
The new law won’t take effect until the vote is certified by Govenor Hickenlooper, which could take 30 days, but by law, doesn’t have to happen until January 5, 2013.
If you have questions about Amendment 64, please call us at 303-758-7700.
Sources: https://www.regulatemarijuana.org/s/regulate-marijuana-alcohol-act-2012, and The Denver Post, “Colorado Officials Seek Clarity After Passage of Marijuana Measure,” John Ingold, November 7, 2012.