Changes to Boulder’s medical marijuana regulations — including an increase in licensing fees, limits on advertising and new rules for manufacturers of infused products — received initial approval from the City Council on Tuesday night.
The City Council voted 8-0 to approve on first reading a series of amendments to the ordinance governing medical marijuana in the city. Councilman Macon Cowles was absent.
The ordinance now goes to a second reading, where there will be a public hearing and a final vote. The second reading is scheduled for Nov. 1, a Thursday. The November regular council meetings will take place on Thursdays to avoid holding a meeting on Election Day.
The ordinance would increase the license application fee to $3,790 from $3,115 and the renewal to $2,750 from $2,075.
City officials said it has cost more to administer the regulations than they had anticipated, and the general fund ended up subsidizing medical marijuana enforcement. The higher fees should close that gap, they said.
The ordinance would also prohibit dispensaries within 1,000 feet of a school. The city’s current ordinance establishes a 500-foot buffer, but the federal government has targeted dispensaries within a 1,000-foot radius for additional enforcement, forcing several dispensaries to close or merge.
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