Inside the grow operation of Options Medical.

(Photo: CPR/Irvin Coffee)

A task force is recommending Jefferson County ban retail marijuana sales in unincorporated parts of the county.

"The task force found compelling evidence that it would not be in the best interest of Jefferson County or its citizens to allow marijuana establishments," the 134-page report states.
 

The task force, made up of local civic leaders, health officials and business leaders, issued its report today after three months of study.

The Jefferson County Board placed a moratorium on marijuana businesses in July 2013, six months after voters in Colorado approved marijuana legalization. Without further action by the board, that moratorium expires Feb. 1, 2015.

Among the task force's findings if marijuana businesses are allowed:

  • Crime and traffic accidents will likely increase
  • Cititations for public consumption will likely increased based on Denver's experience from 2013 to 2014
  • Public health will be affected
  • A new president could enforce federal laws against marijuana sales
  • Increased societal costs will outweigh increased sales tax revenue

The report acknowledges that some data is lacking because marijuana legalization is relatively new.

But it concludes: "The task force believes it is critical that Jefferson County leaders send a strong message that the use of marijuana is not in the best interests of its citizens or in keeping with the healthy and safe environment they are trying to enhance in Jefferson County."