Marijuana 'town hall' Friday at Colorado State Capitol

DENVER - The "marijuana town hall" held Friday by Colorado's Health Department was intended to gauge opinions on closing a legal loophole for medical marijuana caregivers. 

Caregivers are state-sanctioned marijuana growers who grow pot for people on the medical marijuana registry. Colorado has about 5,000 registered caregivers.

Most caregivers have fewer than 30 plants. But some have waivers allowing them to grow hundreds of pot plants without going through background checks and other hoops required of commercial pot growers.

The marijuana town hall is an effort to salvage a plan to close this legal loophole through new legislation. The bill has not yet been introduced, but caregivers are skeptical and say they'll likely oppose the new requirements.

Dr. Larry Wolk, executive director and chief medical officer at the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, spoke of the potential for caregivers to support more than a few patients.

“If you’re caring for more than 5 or 6 people, are you really able to provide for the ‘significant care or well being’ of that person?" he asked. "We have some caregivers in the registry who are caring for 60,70. 80 patients.” 

The bill would define medical marijuana registry access, and limits the number of patients and plants that caregivers could support to no more than five patients and no more than six plants per patient.

The town hall starts Friday at 1 p.m. at the state Capitol.

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