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   Denver Reels from Devastating Med Marijuana Audit
Posted by Staff on July 22, 2013, 12:20 am

By Jeremy P. Meyer, The Denver Post
Source: Denver Post

medical Colorado -- While Denver has become a national leader in how it regulates medical marijuana, an audit released Thursday found serious problems with how the city licenses, tracks and manages the booming medical marijuana industry in the city.

Denver has the most medical marijuana dispensaries in the state — more than the number of liquor stores — but the city's oversight has been "ineffective" and "inefficient" and poses "substantive risks to the city," according to the report that Denver Auditor Dennis Gallagher called "devastating."

Lack of oversight potentially cost the city millions in lost tax revenues and put neighborhoods and citizens at risk, said one member of the audit committee.

City officials didn't even know how many medical marijuana establishments operated in Denver and could not provide a map of their locations, according to the report that offered 20 recommendations for the city's Department of Excise and Licenses to improve the system.

The report identified several problems, including incomplete, inaccurate or inaccessible records; lack of formal processes or policies for licensing; poor coordination between the city and the state Department of Revenue; unenforced deadlines for key steps in the licensing process; and poor management and staffing.

"Do you have any assurance of the safety of our children and our neighborhoods?" audit committee member Jeffrey Hart asked Denver Excise and Licenses Director Tom Downey in a meeting Thursday morning.

"We have phenomenal police officers," Downey said. " I can swear on their behalf that they are doing everything to protect the citizens."

Hart responded: "I was asking about your department."

"Yes, we are doing everything we could do to insure that," Downey said. "We need to do more. We have done everything we can with limited resources and are asking for more resources."

Snipped

Complete Article: http://drugsense.org/url/Tkym5kRJ

Source: Denver Post (CO)
Author: Jeremy P. Meyer, The Denver Post
Published: July 18, 2013
Copyright: 2013 The Denver Post



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