Recreational marijuana issue hits Silt agenda July 22 |

Recreational marijuana issue hits Silt agenda July 22

SILT — The town’s citizenry and elected leaders will get a chance on July 22 to talk about whether Silt will permit recreational pot shops and related facilities within its boundaries, or ban them, in keeping with Colorado’s Amendment 64.

A special work session on the subject, scheduled for July 15, was canceled, according to Town Administrator Pamela Woods.

The newly scheduled meeting will be a work session prior to the board of trustees’ regular meeting on July 22, Woods said.

In addition, she said, there will be a regular agenda item at the meeting after the work session, at which the trustees may or may not make a decision about permitting pot shops and other facilities in town.

The work session is scheduled for 6 p.m. in Town Hall, and the regular meeting begins at 7 p.m.

The amendment, approved by Colorado voters last year by a margin of 55-45 percent, makes it legal for anyone over 21 to grow, buy, make edible products with certain amounts of pot for recreational purposes.

In Silt, Amendment 64 passed by a margin of 87 votes, with total tallies of 1,110-1,023.

Colorado already has been dealing with an earlier constitutional amendment, Amendment 20, which legalized the use of marijuana for medical purposes, as passed by the state’s voters in 2000.

Silt’s voters approved Amendment 20 by a margin of 109 votes, with total tallies of 645-536.

At the trustees’ most recent meeting, on July 8, Trustee Bryan Fleming announced his conclusion that Silt stands to reap considerable amounts of tax revenue by permitting pot shops to locate in the town.

He noted that the town’s trustees have been debating about raising the sales taxes in Silt since a trustee retreat held last January, and argued that permitting pot shops would bring in more revenues and would honor the will of the voters.

Fleming’s declaration drew no supporting statements from his fellow trustees, although Trustee Rick Aluise indicated a certain amount of sympathy with Fleming’s remarks. But, he said, he was worried about the reaction by federal authorities, who operate under a set of laws that continue to make marijuana illegal.

Trustee Paul Taylor was the most adamant in his opposition to Fleming’s suggestions.

“I think it’s a moot point,” Taylor said at the July 8 meeting.

He maintained that if Silt outlaws pot shops, manufacturing facilities and farms, locals are still free to grow it on their own and smoke it.

Taylor did not, however, address the revenue issue.

Woods said the trustees are able to accept public comment at the work session, though she was unsure whether they would do so on July 22.

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