Denver Mayor Michael Hancock has issued a strong statement regarding implementation of Amendment 64.
In a letter, dated April 8, 2013, and addressed to a city council committee charged with recommending local regulatory enforcement of the amendment, the mayor stated that he does not support:
- Public consumption of marijuana in our streets or our parks or anywhere else our population might be unwittingly exposed.
- The establishment of private clubs in Denver. “Amendment 64 does not support this, and neither should we,” he stated.
If Denver chooses to allow retail establishments, the mayor stated he supports:
- A phase-in period of at least two years during which only existing marijuana licensees can apply for licenses under the new law;
- Rigorous standards to protect neighborhoods;
- Meaningful public hearing process;
- Ensuring that any new retail marijuana stores are not allowed near schools or near other marijuana outlets; and
- A funding structure that pays for itself.
As he also notes:
As a parent, I worry about how the increased presence of marijuana in our city will affect our children and our grandchildren. Despite a few lessons learned from medical marijuana, the long-term implications of that industry and the potential for an expanded industry will not be known to us for perhaps a generation or more. There is no denying, however, the potential for a negative impact on our kids — on their home lives, their health, their education and their future. We already know the toll substance abuse takes on so many of our residents. Sadly, many of them are parents. The cost of substance abuse on our healthcare system, our jails and in our courts is substantial. I want more for all of our kids and for all Denverites.