Land grabs, complaints about those potent skunk smells and a massive boost in state coffers.
Those are just some of the politics of pot Californians are all abuzz about if voters approve Proposition 64, the Marijuana Legalization Initiative.
Watch KEYT’s half hour special on Proposition 64 on our YouTube channel or by scrolling to the end of this article.
People in Colorado have lived with legal marijuana (recreational and medicinal) for nearly three years now. NewsChannel 3 traveled there to get a first hand look at how life has changed with legal pot.
Walk the streets of Denver and you’d be hard-pressed not to see or smell traces of marijuana on just about every block.
“It’s like a Starbucks, marijuana shop,” said Denver resident Erika Hicks. “They go hand-in-hand, right next to each other.”
For four days, a NewsChannel 3 crew looked at some of the impacts legal marijuana is having on the Centennial State, from bureaucratic red tape to lush, green grows.
“We’ve seen some positive impacts, we’ve seen some negative impacts,” said Ashley Kilroy, Denver’s Executive Director for Marijuana Policy. “And we’ve seen a whole bunch of unknown impacts.”
An historic, ground-breaking medicinal marijuana law in Colorado Springs is helping save the lives of kids and teens on school campuses.
And in Denver, stoners will find their dream ride on the Loopr bus, a cannabis carnival on wheels.
Colorado is raking in the green, thanks to a boom in locals and tourists partaking.
“It’s doctors, lawyers, average working people,” Jamie Perino said of the customers who come to her Euflora recreational pot shop on the popular 16th Street Mall.
NewsChannel 3 found police and firefighters are faced with new types of crimes and challenges. City and state leaders are counting their boosting coffers, but at the same time closing legal loopholes
“One was an individual who had consumed way too much and he fell off a balcony at a hotel,” said Barbara Brohl, Denver’s Executive Director for Marijuana Policy.
Some Colorado residents are quick to point out what’s worked under legal marijuana laws.
“Cannabis was not the downfall of society in Colorado,” said William Campbell, Euflora’s Director of Cultivation.
Other Centennial State residents believe legalizing recreational marijuana years ago was a big mistake.
“It changes how people behave publicly,” said Amy Fisk.