The Grand Junction City Council has started tackling the future of medical marijuana.
A few dozen medical marijuana supporters attended the council's work session to find out what council members want to do. Karen Mariluch was one of them. She started using a marijuana based ointment about a year ago.
"It replaced the drugs I was taking for my back pain and my head pain that I had."
She afraid changes to the state law and a new local ordinance could make it harder for her to get the relief she's come to count on.
"If I don't have it, I have to go back to government regulated drugs that make me sick and they will make me more dependent on them."
Karen says she knows some people with medical marijuana cards abuse the system, or knowingly break the law.
"I worry about the people that are doing things like that because they are going to ruin it for the rest of us who are using it for medication."
She thinks more regulation of the industry is a good idea, but is worried about what other problems too many rules might create.
"They need to put some sort of sanctions on this. But, they (government agencies) need to get together and do it.
The vague wording of Colorado's Amendment 20, confusing new state legislation and conflicting federal laws mean city council members have a lot to consider before they make a decision.
"It always raises the question of, are we going to be doing something that is going to be seen as illegal?" Grand Junction Mayor Teresa Coons asks.
She says over the summer the council will be studying the law and learning how other communities handle marijuana dispensaries. But, she says the council members also want to hear from the people who have a stake in this issue.
"Whether it's law enforcement, the school district, the dispensary owners or the public," Coons says.
Monday's work session comes about a week after Governor Bill Ritter signed legislation allowing municipalities to govern dispensaries. There is no set time line for the city to finish this ordinance, but later this summer we should see a first draft of an ordinance then at least one public hearing.
NewsHawk: Ganjarden: 420 MAGAZINE
Source: KJCT Grand Junction
Contact: KJCT Grand Junction
Copyright: 2010, Pikes Peak Television, Inc
Website: GJ Council Considering Pot Laws
* Thanks to MedicalNeed for submitting this article