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Colorado Task Force Tackles Difficult Issues in Regulating Legal Marijuana

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A task force in Colorado will be making recommendations on how to regulate marijuana, now that recreational use of the drug has been legalized. The group is suggesting rules for everything from “pot tourism” to whether people can smoke marijuana on their backyard patios.

The task force will submit its report to the Colorado legislature by the end of this month, according to The Christian Science Monitor. With many other states considering legalization measures, Colorado’s steps to regulate marijuana could have a larger impact, by providing a framework for other states to follow.

The state faces many thorny issues, such as how much marijuana an out-of-state buyer can purchase, how to deal with people who smoke marijuana in front of their children, and how to ensure people have incentives to use the drug responsibly.

While some of the group’s recommendations are similar to regulations for alcohol and tobacco, some are quite different, the article notes.

“We made an industry out of cigarettes, we made an industry out of alcohol and now we’re creating an industry out of marijuana – frankly, it’s surreal sometimes,” task force member Mary Beth Susman, President of the Denver City Council, told the newspaper. “We’re making rules about an activity that is illegal according to the federal government, and sometimes we’re making rules that in the normal course of events would be illegal themselves in order to stay under the radar of the federal government.”

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