'Like Second-Class Citizens': Hickenlooper Blasted by Marijuana Advocates for Vetoes | NTK Network ‘Like Second-Class Citizens’: Hickenlooper Blasted by Marijuana Advocates for Vetoes

‘Like Second-Class Citizens’: Hickenlooper Blasted by Marijuana Advocates for Vetoes

The marijuana industry and its advocates are blasting the Colorado governor for his vetoes last week.

By NTK Staff | 06.11.2018 @10:00am
‘Like Second-Class Citizens’: Hickenlooper Blasted by Marijuana Advocates for Vetoes

Last week, outgoing Gov. John Hickenlooper (D-CO) vetoed three bills related to the state’s budding marijuana trade, and now the $1.5-billion industry is threatening to leave the state.

The Denver Business Journal‘s Monica Vendituoli reported that Hickenlooper’s vetoes have lit a fire underneath the marijuana industry, and that some in the industry are threatening to walk from Colorado.

Bruce Nassau, board chairman of the Marijuana Industry Group, said the veto of House Bill 1011 is especially troubling for the industry.

“I have spoken with, I would say, three or four different organizations, a couple of whom have indicated a consideration to leave the state because of the now lack of availability of public capital,” Nassau said.

If passed, HB 1011 would have allowed for publicly traded entities to hold a marijuana license. It also would have created other measures that would allow for increased capital infusions into the industry.

Vendituoli also reported that advocates were incensed, and that one pointed out Hickenlooper’s hypocrisy (given he became rich from brewing beer):

“Since Day 1, John Hickenlooper, who made a small fortune selling alcohol in social venues, has treated adult cannabis consumers like second-class citizens,” Mason Tvert, a partner at cannabis consulting firm VS Strategies and co-director of the 2012 Amendment 64 campaign to legalize adult-use marijuana, said.

Meanwhile, Colorado Public Radio reported that “[m]uch of the ire was focused on the veto of HB 18-1263, which would have added autism spectrum disorder to the list of qualifying conditions under the state’s medical marijuana program.”

“We respected you, and you vetoed our bill at 5:01 p.m., when we respectfully and cordially left the Capitol,” [a patient advocate] said. “This is a slight to our families.”

This is probably not the way the governor wanted to end his last bill-signing season as governor.

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