Colorado marijuana regulation panel hopes to complete work on proposals; pot tax waiting for vote

DENVER - Colorado’s marijuana regulation panel hopes to complete work on a series of proposals that will decide how the drug will be grown, sold and taxed.

A major item awaiting a vote is how to tax the drug.

Pot taxes need to be high enough to pay for regulation and efforts to keep pot away from people under 21, lawmakers said. But if marijuana sales taxes are too high, pot users warn they'll stay in the black market, where no taxes are collected.

Colorado's marijuana excise tax is capped at 15 percent. State sales taxes add 2.9 percent, with lawmakers still debating an additional pot sales tax.

The pot committee planned to meet Saturday if they couldn't settle the remaining questions Friday.

Earlier this week, the House unanimously approved H.B. 1114, which establishes limits for drivers under the influence of marijuana.

Under the bill, drivers may be considered impaired if a blood test shows more than 5 nanograms (billionths of a gram) of Delta 9 THC in a milliliter of blood. THC is the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana.