By: Nabil Rodriguez, Esq.
No matter where you are in the world, COVID-19 (better known as the novel Coronavirus of 2019) has become the focus of every news broadcast, radio show, and even casual conversation.
In a time where businesses are forced to make difficult decisions to combat a global health crisis, cannabis businesses are no exception. During these uncertain times, we will be providing guidance on issues that can affect the marijuana industry in the face of this pandemic. First, we’ll take a look at medical marijuana delivery in Colorado.
Although many restaurants across the U.S. are now limited to take-out or delivery, medical marijuana dispensaries in Colorado may be severely limited in their ability to provide product to their patients. Pursuant to state law, medical marijuana businesses may only deliver medical marijuana to patients after obtaining a Medical Marijuana Delivery Permit from the state licensing authority. In order for a business to apply for the state permit, however, the local jurisdiction where the business is operating must authorize medical marijuana delivery pursuant to local ordinance or resolution.
Most states authorized delivery of medical marijuana to patients in their initial medical marijuana legislation, but Colorado did not. In fact, Colorado Governor Jared Polis signed House Bill 19-1234 in May 2019 to authorize the delivery of medical marijuana by January 2, 2020.
As of today, however, no local jurisdiction in Colorado has moved forward with an ordinance or resolution to authorize medical marijuana delivery.
Authorizing medical marijuana delivery has become critically important during a global pandemic. With many medical patients having higher risks of contracting COVID-19 due to their underlying conditions, not offering a reliable system to access their medication puts them at risk. It is unfortunate that it took a global health crisis to shed light on this issue.
Please contact us with questions on how to advocate for immediate change in your locality or with questions regarding amending your business practices to help limit the possible exposure to COVID-19 while remaining in compliance with local, state, and federal laws.
We are thinking of our communities, clients, and friends. We’re in this together.