It’s Official: Cannabis Possession And Cultivation Now Legal In Colorado

History was made once again today when Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper signed an Executive Order that makes an “official declaration of the vote” related to Amendment 64. This declaration formalizes the amendment as part of the state Constitution and makes legal the personal use, possession and limited home-growing of marijuana under Colorado law for adults 21 years of age and older.

“Voters were loud and clear on Election Day,” Gov. Hickenlooper said in a prepared statement. “We will begin working immediately with the General Assembly and state agencies to implement Amendment 64.”

Colorado joins Washington as the first two states in modern history to legalize the consumption of cannabis by adults.

As of today, the following acts are no longer unlawful under Colorado state law for persons 21 years of age or older:

(a) POSSESSING, USING, DISPLAYING, PURCHASING, OR TRANSPORTING MARIJUANA ACCESSORIES OR ONE OUNCE OR LESS OF MARIJUANA.

(b) POSSESSING, GROWING, PROCESSING, OR TRANSPORTING NO MORE THAN SIX MARIJUANA PLANTS, WITH THREE OR FEWER BEING MATURE, FLOWERING PLANTS, AND POSSESSION OF THE MARIJUANA PRODUCED BY THE PLANTS ON THE PREMISES WHERE THE PLANTS WERE GROWN, PROVIDED THAT THE GROWING TAKES PLACE IN AN ENCLOSED, LOCKED SPACE, IS NOT CONDUCTED OPENLY OR PUBLICLY, AND IS NOT MADE AVAILABLE FOR SALE.

(c) TRANSFER OF ONE OUNCE OR LESS OF MARIJUANA WITHOUT REMUNERATION TO A PERSON WHO IS TWENTY-ONE YEARS OF AGE OR OLDER.

(d) CONSUMPTION OF MARIJUANA, PROVIDED THAT NOTHING IN THIS SECTION SHALL PERMIT CONSUMPTION THAT IS CONDUCTED OPENLY AND PUBLICLY OR IN A MANNER THAT ENDANGERS OTHERS.

(e) ASSISTING ANOTHER PERSON WHO IS TWENTY-ONE YEARS OF AGE OR OLDER IN ANY OF THE ACTS DESCRIBED IN PARAGRAPHS (a) THROUGH (d) OF THIS SUBSECTION.

Governor Hickelnlooper also announced today the formation of 24-member task force to oversee the implementation of the law, which ultimately mandates for the commercial production and sale of cannabis by those licensed to do so. A representative of Colorado NORML sits on this task force.

As I previously wrote last week, to be clear: This is not decriminalization — a policy change that amends criminal penalties for minor marijuana offenses, but that continues to define cannabis as illegal contraband under the law and subjects its consumers to civil penalties. Today in Colorado, like in Washington, cannabis — when possessed in private by an adult in specific quantities — is a legal commodity. And it is likely that there is very little that the federal government can do to stop it. States are not mandated to criminalize marijuana or arrest adult cannabis consumers and the federal government cannot compel prosecutors in Colorado or Washington to do otherwise.

The voters have spoken and change is upon us. Can you smell the freedom?

56 thoughts

  1. It’s a great day for freedom. Rocky Mountain High just keeps gettin’ higher. Way to go Colorado. Well done. 🙂

  2. OMG I wish I lived in CO or WA instead of God Forsaken Virginia… One way or another, I intend to be living somewhere it is legal within the next 5 years. I’m so tired of the idiotic BS that the Feds try to stuff down the throats of the American people that I’d leave this country if that’s what it takes!

  3. That’s amazing, for the longest time after Nov. 6th everyone including me thought the Governor would wait until January 7th, or even worse delay the process but I was wrong!

    Even in Denverpost he had stated that there was no point in waiting for that long. Good for him! Good for Colorado, I’m soo jealous and as a California Medical Cannabis Patient, I might move someday!

    ~Cheers and Happy Holidays ^_^

  4. Thanks a million to NORML, and all the folks who have helped world wide! MR. President, do the right thing for the Nation. Free the People Now! 420 forever!

  5. Congratulations to sensible minds who voted this historic legislation into law, loudly proclaiming that lawmakers, law enforcement, and the unenlightened will be heard and will live as they so choose. It’s a testament to the will of the citizens of those states, who believe in personal freedom and state’s rights.

    It’s an equally sad statement on the intransigence of those elected to represent them, who place their own morals above the will of the people. It’s a forceful statement recognizing that law enforcement at all levels remains unwilling and unable to enforce laws with equality. It’s a statent that says, ‘Enough of your empty arguments and outright deceptions. Enough of your violent raids and the macho attitudes and moralistic judgement that accompanies them. Enough of the willful money grabs from Federal coffers of your citizens. Enough of your own personal hypocrisy, disguised hatred and disguised love of power. Enough!’

    Yet the sad state of affairs remains for the vast majority of Americans, who must suffer alone in their pain and misery, die a wasting disease or simply not engage in life’s basic activities. For all but 18 states, the citizenry still cannot seek relief from numerous maladies other than the toxic and often life-threatening chemicals that are the prescription drug industry. They cannot discuss openly with their physician the topic of cannabis as a medicine for fear of being labeled a drug abuser. And their elected officials, who should be their loudest voice and advocate, readily cling to tired arguments, merely parroting what the government and those vested by hatred of those unlike them or otherwise incented by their own greed for power or money.

    The travesty of liberty remains for most. And the goons are meeting frantically to figure out how to further stifle freedom. Now more than ever citizens who love liberty and love this nation must continue the fight. They must continue to show the entrenched that laws and morals that oppress are the highest of evils. Laws that result in deaths, not life, are more immoral than personal choices. And we must never relinquish our right to have our voices heard. Stand up! Tell your representatives you are sick and tired of laws that result in people dying and lives ruined. This is wrong, and it must be remedied for our nation and for mankind.

  6. I smell it! I smell it! Hooray for all our brothers and sisters in Colorado! You and the good folks in Washington now have a freedom that I can only dream about (and hope for, and someday hopefully vote for). It must be a wonderful feeling! Looks like I’m just gonna have to plan a trip to see the Broncos or Rockies.

    I still worry about the federal govt’s reaction, However, if we can get legalization passed in other states in the coming years it’ll undoubtedly take the pressure off Colo and Wash.

    BTW, has anyone else seen the media blitz of late about stoned drivers? Geez, it’s like they have some crotchety old prohibitionist sitting behind a desk somewhere, passing out the talking points. I’ve even seen at least one reference to that on these boards. STONED DRIVERS BAD DANGEROUS. MUST PROHIBIT! KEEP STONED DRIVERS AWAY.

  7. I feel like Mrs Obama for the first time in my life I am proud of my Country lol jk madam Presidant did not vote of Obama I voted for Jhonson, but he is my President now too and I wish them both all the best. Wtg CO I really am proud to be an American today this can help this Country in so many ways having the ture will of the people done, and going back to our roots. Also hope CO gives the Gov benifit of doubt he was not for this but did not delay when he saw will of the people, and honestly you can not expect someone to agree with you on everthing but folloiwng the will of the people is always the right thing, and all you can ask from gov servent. Please wake up TN so I do not have to move to CO its hunting season :(. All though I might like the fishing better 🙂

  8. Great news – it is starting to feel very real. I hope the feds will leave licensed businesses alone once they start. Do we know what the penalties will be for breaking the law on the number of plants grown or the amount of marijuana possessed will be? The limit of 1 oz for personal possession is a bit low. What if you grow 3 huge plants in a greenhouse each – you could yield several kilos from this but would you be able to legally keep your harvest ? Or you could grow 4 plants in a micro grow box and just get a couple of ounces but presumably the latter would be illegal. I’m not sure if these limits are workable but I suppose it stops an absolute deluge of pot production. Maybe it is the first thing the task force could look at.

  9. I feel like the guy who gets hit in the chest right as the chopper comes….”It`s too late for me! Forget about it!!” For almost forty years, I felt the anxiety of lighting up when lighting up. Like an urchin boy who gets slapped every time he holds up his bowl for gruel. Fear has become part and parcel of the experience. I don`t think I can seperate the two. How sad is that?!?

  10. ” The voters have spoken and change is upon us. Can you smell the freedom? ”

    I have a question for the Governor. Will you stand with the citizens against Federal agents that are going to test the law? Will you put state LEOs between us and them when they come, or will you shrug and let us get chained and caged?

    I know there will be legal battles ahead but I just want to know how far the state is willing to take this to ensure our rights and votes are protected.

  11. Just imagine how the federal thugs and goons feel about this…..some probably have spent their entire careers, energy, and life devoted to a failed worthless marijuana policy. They are wrong and they now realize it. Their entire career now up in smoke and the smoke is getting blown in their face. “WAIT……that smoke sure makes me happy, can you blow some more my way?”

  12. Congrats from Ohio, and thank you. Maybe, just maybe freedom has a chance after all. I can’t wait to visit you and dump money into your economy. I’ve heard many good things about the beauty of Colorado and I absolutely cannot wait to enjoy some good bud and take it all in without having to look over my shoulder. It’s gonna be amazing. Peace.

  13. This is fantastic to read! I live just a little less fearfully these days, knowing that there is widespread support for this movement. It is an awesome achievement for both Washington and Colorado, the entire United States, and the world for that matter. Our country is very influential in the global political stage, so let us set an example for the rest of the world and be advocates for the freedom of our own bodies and consciousness. Two states is not enough — it’s a monumental achievement, and quite possibly the spark that will light the fire — but we cannot settle for pseudo-legalization and grey areas. Contact your representatives, speak up in your community, and do not be afraid to express your feelings about cannabis legislation to the people close to you. It’s up to us how quickly this happens. How much longer do you want to live as if you are a criminal? It’s an outrageous inhumanity! Good luck to you all and thanks for your support!

  14. Will out of staters be able to buy from dispensaries? Obviously, transporting across state lines is a no no, but I am visiting in January and would like to have a nice, easy, legal smoke!

    [Paul Armentano responds: The law applies legal protections to anyone 21 or older, regardless of state residency. That said, regulations regarding commercial sales to non-patients will not be in place until late 2013.]

  15. Maybe I’m a cynic, but this isn’t good enough! Why put limits on it? I won’t be satisfied until the plant is seen as it truly is…a miracle and blessing ha 😀

  16. Just a few thoughts for today. I heard on the raido about the execution of a former florida police officer who killed nine people about ten years ago. Most of his victims were involved with drugs. He testified that he felt he was doing society a favor. There have been a couple of jailhouse suicides in Weber county Utah. Former president George H. W. Bush is in the hospital with an upper respiratory infection, I’m sure he’s getting then best medical care. I wonder if Mr Bush knows what it’s like to go to work sick in the winter. Anyone here know how bad an ear infection hurts? Kinder more gentle nation.

  17. Washington State was the first and a one big step, but Colorado is one giant leap towards freedom to enjoy cannabis. An added small greenhouse to the backdoor will bring joy along with the great American cannabis sativa comeback.

    I am one of the sativa fans waiting for the volume two of the book, Cannabis Sativa.

  18. @Almoderate – Your question for the Governor is most excellent! Will he help to enforce the will of the people, or will he bow before the Federal goonsquads in their seemingly neverending zeal to spoil our freedoms we should enjoy as Americans?

  19. @ Tim

    I’m with you brother. My wife and I went to Amsterdam twice in this last decade; and on both trips, we couldn’t get over the feeling of looking over our shoulders when we sparked. Pot is actually technically illegal in the Netherlands, but “tolerated” by the cops, govt, etc. Still, similar to the legalization amendments in WA and CO, pot smoking in public in Amsterdam is frowned upon (still illegal in WA and CO), especially near kids and seniors.

    Alas, we may never get over that feeling of looking over our shoulder when we spark, legalization or not, it’s been so ingrained in us. Still, these are happy times.

  20. United States federal government officials have consistently denied that marijuana has any medical benefits. On the other, the government actually holds patents for the medical use of the plant.

    Just check out US Patent 6630507 titled “Cannabinoids as antioxidants and neuroprotectants” which is assigned to The United States of America, as represented by the Department of Health and Human Services.
    The patent claims that –

  21. god bless all the voters in co. and wash. You got this ball rolling. Lets do 420 at the mall in washington d.c. Let our lawmakers here the will of people.

  22. FREEEEEEEDOM! God bless the people of Colorado for having the common sense and courage to pass this legislation. Hopefully other states will follow suit, its time we stop the reefer madness.

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