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Several contentious bills coming to legislature, Denver attorney sues state 

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Watch the bills

The Southern Colorado Cannabis Council (sococc.org) is gearing up for the coming legislative session, which begins in January. Among other efforts at the state Capitol, the group, formerly known as the Colorado Springs Medical Cannabis Council, says in a newsletter to expect:

• The "Drug Endangered Child Bill," which the group says currently has no sponsor, and is still in the draft stage. "It is even tougher to say that people in our own industry are helping to draft this, but they are," writes executive director Jason Warf. "In a nutshell, this bill allows the tools for law enforcement and child services to make the determination that cannabis is a danger to your child.

"The biggest problem with this bill is that it leaves this up to them to determine. Given the history of law enforcement's attitude towards cannabis, we see this as possibly a huge problem for any patient, consumer, caregiver, or owner."

• The "Caregiver Bill," sponsored by Sen. Irene Aguilar and Rep. Jonathan Singer (see ReLeaf, Oct. 17). It would mandate that medical-marijuana caregivers register with the state in an attempt to limit how many plants are grown (and, so goes the theory, diverted to the black market). It also seeks to make it harder to get an MMJ card solely to treat "severe pain," the most common reason cited.

"The attacks currently happening ... serve to whittle away at our medical industry," writes Warf. "We are working diligently with the sponsors, Rep Singer and Rep [sic] Aguilar to drastically change this bill."

SCCC is also planning to run pro-cannabis candidates for Colorado Springs City Council. We couldn't reach Warf by press time; look for more in future columns.

Sue you again, soon

Denver attorney Robert Corry — he of the No Over Taxation group, which opposed last November's statewide tax vote and has encountered a string of legal entanglements — is suing the state of Colorado again, this time in an attempt to revert to the pre-House Bill 1284 days of 2010.

Naming Gov. John Hickenlooper, the Department of Revenue, Denver Mayor Michael Hancock and others, Corry's suit wants to roll back the clock. It seeks to stop the state "from implementation and enforcement of a reckless scheme of regulation, registration, licensing, and taxation, that requires self-incrimination through mandatory, unequivocal, and law enforcement-accessible admissions of involvement with a federally-illegal Schedule I narcotic: Marijuana."

It then cites a variety of older media stories where Colorado U.S. Attorney John Walsh is quoted saying the state's marijuana shops have no safe harbor from federal prosecution, despite any indication otherwise. Read the full complaint at tiny.cc/l2okqx.

— Bryce Crawford

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