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Geoff Livingston

The Denver Chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) announced Monday it submitted an initiative that would allow for adults who are over 21 to consume cannabis in a quasi-public setting.

Since Colorado’s cannabis market opened in 2014, there has been consistent criticism about the lack of social destinations for cannabis consumption. This has affected tourists to Colorado in particular, who have largely been forced to partake in the state’s legal cannabis in public — or in their hotel — which is ultimately illegal. Currently, cannabis consumption is only allowed inside of a private residence.

If the initiative passes, according to Denver NORML, “private 21+ marijuana social clubs will become legal, as will private 21+ events where marijuana can be lawfully consumed.” The clubs would not be allowed to sell or distribute cannabis, and existing nightclubs, bars, and restaurants would not be allowed to become private marijuana clubs.

“We expect there will be a wide range of clubs to serve Denver’s huge and diverse marijuana market,” said Jordan Person, executive director of Denver NORML. “What can’t continue is the current situation that leaves so many people frustrated, angry, and tempted to violate the law so they can enjoy a legal product.”

The issue will be sent to Denver voters with the coming November’s city ballot.

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