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City Proposes Application, License Fees for Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

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Colorado Springs, CO.--Medical marijuana dispensaries in Colorado Springs would have to pay the city at least $5,840 in application and license fees under a proposal that's up for discussion Friday.

The city is holding a public hearing at 9 a.m. in Suite 102 of the City Administration Building, 30 S. Nevada Ave., to discuss the proposed fees as well as proposed rules and regulations and application requirements for the medical marijuana industry.

The proposed fee structure calls for a medical marijuana center to pay a minimum of $5,840 in the first year, including a one-time $2,200 application fee, annual $1,800 center license fee, annual $1,800 grow premises license fee and $40 fingerprint fee.

Other proposed fees include a $2,200 transfer of ownership application fee and a $1,000 modification of premises fee.

The proposed fees are "actually less than Denver and Boulder," said Lee McRae, a license enforcement officer in the City Clerk's Office.

But Cliff Black, an attorney who represents several dispensary owners, said the proposed fees aren't "rationally related" to any expenses.

"The state is already doing background checks and licensing these businesses," he said. "I don't think it needs to be duplicative with the city."

McRae said the city is trying to recover its costs, from police enforcement to court time.
But Black said other types of businesses, such as retail stores and banks, receive police enforcement, too, but don't pay for it through licensing fees.

"I think there's knee-jerk reactions to medical marijuana businesses, and one of the knee-jerk reactions is to charge them excessive licensing fees," he said.

"These businesses need to be treated like any other business in town," he said.

"According to the fees, it's clearly not happening. I don't know of another small-size business that's required to pay $5,800 in application and license fees to the city."

Kalani Bullard, who owns Hawaiian Herbal Heath Center, 3729 Austin Bluffs Parkway, said he has mixed feelings about the proposed fees.

On one hand, he said, the city is already collecting money from medical marijuana businesses through sales tax revenue. But on the other hand, the proposed fees could help weed out the less legitimate business owners.

"Right now," he said, "the market is so flooded that a lot of us are hurting as well because there's a dispensary on every corner."


News Hawk- Jacob Ebel 420 MAGAZINE
Source: gazette.com
Author: Daniel Chacon
Contact: Contact Us
Copyright: Freedom Communications
Website: City proposes application, license fees for medical marijuana dispensaries
 
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