A limited number of medical marijuana dispensaries in Colorado Springs would be able to obtain licenses to sell adult-use cannabis under a ballot measure proposed by City Councilwoman Jill Gaebler. If the proposal appears on the ballot in November and is approved by voters, 24 businesses currently dispensing cannabis for medicinal use would be allowed to sell recreational pot.
Gaebler said that the sale of adult-use cannabis in Colorado Springs would generate badly needed tax revenue at a time when the economic downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic has led to the city’s 2020 budget being slashed by $21 million. By legalizing recreational cannabis and imposing a 12% tax on sales, the city could raise $16 million to $18 million per year, according to Gaebler’s projections.
“We need to find creative ways to increase our revenues and this is an obvious way to do that,” Gaebler said.
Colorado Springs currently has 118 medical marijuana dispensaries that serve the city’s approximately 22,000 registered patients, but the city council voted in 2013 to opt out of the state’s adult-use cannabis market. Under Gaebler’s proposal, 24 of the shops would be allowed to exchange their medical license and sell recreational cannabis instead.