Colorado: Lawmakers Approve Social Equity Legislation

On June 26, 2020, legislation was delivered to the desk of Governor Jared Polis (D) concerning social equity applicants for marijuana business licenses and who would qualify under this title.

HB 20-1424 expands the pool of people eligible for the state’s social equity program, seeking to reduce barriers of entry into the marijuana industry for those who have been disproportionately harmed by the enforcement of marijuana prohibition and criminalization.

A separate provision of the bill would allow the governor to “grant pardons to a class of defendants who were convicted of the possession of up to two ounces of marijuana without an application and without seeking the comment of the district attorneys and judges for those cases.”

“Many bills have been introduced in the last week or so and are moving just as quickly through the process,” a spokesperson for Gov. Jared Polis (D) told Marijuana Moment. “This bill is a product of good stakeholder work to find a path forward on important policy in a way to also not generate opposition. The governor is happy that a meaningful, bipartisan bill addressing equity is advancing and thanks lawmakers for their efforts to get this bill to his desk.”