Recreational marijuana: Some cities aren't ready

Recreational Marijuana Shops

MANITOU SPRINGS, Co. - The market for recreation marijuana officially opens on January 1st for cities allowing the recreational sale of pot.

But that doesn't mean any of those cities in Southern Colorado will be ready to sell pot recreationally.

67% of voters in Manitou Springs said yes to Amendment 64, which legalized recreational marijuana.

But a Manitou Springs City Council member says, those pot shops aren't going to open - at least not any time soon.

"There has been a lot of back and forth and as soon as I saw the results of the vote I realize it was probably going to be a contentious issue in the community," said Manitou Springs City Council Member, Randy Hodges,

It's an issue that has yet to be sorted out.

"We're pioneering this effort, we in Colorado are on the crest of the effort going forward with this and we want to make sure we initiate it as properly as we can," explains Hodges.

In Manitou Springs, medical marijuana shops that want to sell recreational pot haven't had the chance to apply yet.

Hodges said, "We still have a moratorium on applications. They cannot apply. That extends until the end of the month, the end of the year."

A delay that will probably be extended again.

"We are delaying in the effort to do it right," he said.

Until Manitou Springs City Council figures out all those rules and regulations, medical marijuana dispensaries will have to hold off on recreational sales. Meanwhile, shops in Pueblo County are set to open in January.

Six marijuana businesses in Pueblo County have already applied to open their doors.

Zero shops in Manitou Springs will be opening in January.

"Because of our difficulties with our tourism industry, the fires, the floods and everything, we're very well aware that all of our competing mountain towns are going forward with this, 27 of them. So we're already lagging behind if we're going to tap this tourist industry," said Hodges.

On Thursday night a subcommittee met in Manitou Springs to discuss the possibility of extending the moratorium- pushing back the opening of any recreational pot shops even further.

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