The first few years of legalization are very exciting for the states reaping the benefits, but there is one major downside to being built from the ground up: All the changing regulations. It seems that every time a place gets established with growing, selling or cultivating cannabis, new rules pop up that change the way things can be done. Some regulations on growing recently imposed in Boulder County could have a major impact on the industry.
According to Times-Call, the Boulder County Planning Commission is currently deciding whether they should implement new regulations for their county. If these new rules go through, only single-family dwelling units would be able to cultivate homegrown cannabis. No one living in an apartment building, condo or duplex could grow or make infused products, and no one living in a building zoned for retail could do so either.
The new regulations would also specify that only six plants could be grown per single-family household, and that those plants could only be for the people in the household. Current regulations allow for as much cannabis as can fit into 300 square feet to be grown indoors, and they also allow for those plants to be grown by caregivers for other patients. Since many more than six plants can fit into 300 square feet, these new regulations would have a big effect on current home growers. Another new rule would be that cannabis grows cannot cause any strong odors or loud sounds that disturb the peace of the surrounding areas.
The new codes would also relate specifically to unincorporated areas of the county, meaning areas that are not part of a city or town within Boulder County. All of the towns and cities in the county have their own rules and regulations about growing cannabis, which would not be affected by these changing rules.
Bryan Harding, one of the senior planners for Boulder County’s Land Use Department, reported that the Commission has received 153 letters on the topic. 136 people supported the proposal, 11 had no issue with it, and three opposed it. Several of the people supporting it complained about dangers from indoor grows. Apparently, several of these grows have caused fires due to faulty wiring. Opponents stated that limiting to six plants would be harmful for patients who relied on caregivers to grow their product for them.
Harding explained that one letter stated an opposition to the legality of the proceedings. The author wrote that he or she “questioned the enforceability of marijuana regulations when other residential uses and activities also have an impact on neighbors, such as loud noises from lawn mowers or barbecue smoke that drifts across property lines.”
While having indoor grows that aren’t being properly regulated can certainly cause hazards, this new regulation could have a major impact on caregivers and patients, as well as those who grow their own and live in apartments or condos. Hopefully, if this measure passes, Boulder County will find new ways to support the patients who rely on cannabis for their medical needs.