With a record of 17 wins and six losses, the Ridgway Lady Demons girls basketball season ended in Durango on Saturday after a 47 to 42 loss against Paonia in the 2A Region 3 Championship match. Photo by Bill Tiedje Read more...
|COLORADO/OURAY COUNTY Retail pot rolls out in the new year||| Print ||
“It has taken an enormous team effort to be able to issue state licenses in the timelines identified in Amendment 64. This could not have been possible without the collaboration of all of the members of the Task Force, the Legislature and interested stakeholders,” said Barbara Brohl, executive director of the DoR.
Of the 136 stores licensed, 102 shops are located in the Denver area alone and three stores were approved in Telluride. While Ridgway’s Acme Healing Center is still awaiting approval for its license from the state, general manager David Niccum said Acme's Western Slope stores will definitely sell retail products.
The Ridgway facility is hoping to receive its license by the second week of January, in time for the center’s open house to the public on Jan. 11. The open house will feature Bongo Love’s woodcarving to the Town of Ridgway and will give visitors the opportunity to ask representatives questions regarding marijuana laws in the state.
“We’re crossing our fingers to sell recreational (marijuana) on that day, but there’s no guarantee,” said Niccum. “We’re still going to have a good time regardless.”
Before opening a retail marijuana business, retailers need approval from the local municipality as well as from the state. The Town of Ridgway passed Ordinance 05-2013 during the Aug. 14 town council meeting, allowing retail marijuana sales within town limits, provided the establishment has a 1,000 foot setback from any school, alcohol or drug treatment facility, college campus or residential childcare service and is located in the Town’s I-1, I-2 or General Commercial Zoning district.
Already having town approval, the only thing left for Acme is to receive its license from the state. Once the license comes through, not much else needs to be done to prepare for sales, said Niccum. Only a few housekeeping tasks, such as dividing rooms in the facility and transferring portions of products from medical to retail will have to be done beforehand.
According to state regulations, only existing medical marijuana facilities are able to begin selling recreational marijuana to individuals over the age of 21 this year. The City of Ouray has established a moratorium on marijuana sales and will leave the decision on whether or not to allow pot shops within city limits up to voters next November. If approved, marijuana shops may not even come to life in Ouray until late 2014 or 2015.
However, Ridgway is only a drive away and Niccum said Acme Healing Center facilities in Ridgway, Durango and Crested Butte are already getting flooded with calls and questions from travelers out of state curious about marijuana laws. Surprisingly, most questions are coming from baby boomers rather than college students, said Niccum.
Despite opposing views within the county, Niccum said he believes retail marijuana sales in Ridgway will increase tourism and allow the town to become a destination rather than a stop on the road.
“We’re opening our doors to the world and if we can entice some people to come to Ridgway, that’s great,” he said. “Like everything we’ve done with our business, we’re gonna do it with class and respect and follow the rules and regulations. I don’t think it’s going to be what people think it’s going to be.”
Licensed retailers have gone through the state’s strict Retail Marijuana licensing process, which included submission of required documentation, fingerprint-based background checks, financial checks and payment of licensing fees, which could cost businesses up to $14,000 in fees alone. In accordance with state law, the DoR must either approve or deny a business’ license application within 90 days of submission. Upon receiving a license, businesses must follow further rigorous regulations in order to continue selling products.
“The Division takes its responsibility very seriously and will continue to ensure a robust and effective regulatory and enforcement program. Thank you to everyone who has contributed their time, effort and expertise,” said Brohl.
Colorado voters have been pivotal in progressing the marijuana movement throughout the state. In November, Proposition AA was passed, enforcing a 15 percent excise tax on the “average market rate” of marijuana and a 10-15 percent sales tax on retail sales in addition to the already existing 2.9 percent state sales tax and any local government sales taxes. Revenue generated from the growing marijuana industry will be used for school construction projects and regulation enforcement.
|FOLLOW RIDGWAY GIRLS NOW ON TWITTER|
Final: Ridgway girls lose 47-42 to Paonia after a valiant 4th quarter comeback attempt.
Update: 45-42, Crozier hits 2 from the line.
Update: 52 seconds, 45-40 Paonia
Update: 2:19 remaining, Paonia on top 43-34
Update: Paonia up 43-32 in 4th Qtr.
Update: Paonia up 25-21 at half.
Update: Paonia up 21-19 in 2nd Qtr.
Update: Tied 13-13 end of 1st Qtr.
Update: Teams trade leads early - Ridgway up 9-8.
Update: Ridgway girls are up 6-0 early in Durango.
Follow all the action of the Ridgway girls basketball team vs. Paonia right now on Twitter, @ocplaindealer
|2013-14 Winter Guide|
|2013 Summer Guide|
|Kids' Holiday Art Section 2013|