Colorado, Washington Face ‘Marijuana Tourism’ Status
Not all citizens in Colorado and Washington are thrilled about recreational marijuana becoming legalized.
Though there were enough votes last week to get the law passed, the federal government is likely to put everything they have in getting the it reversed. Adults over 21 living in both states are allowed to posses small amounts of marijuana for personal use. Tourists visiting are also allowed to purchase and use the drug legally in each state.
Al White, Colorado’s tourism director thinks it won’t have much an effect on the increase “weed tourism,” which is feared by local officials.
“It won’t be as big a deal as either side hopes or fears,” White said.
Could Colorado and Washington turn into Amsterdam?
Ski resorts are “certainly watching it closely,” said Jennifer Rudolph of Colorado Ski Country USA, a trade association that represents 21 Colorado resorts.
Any plans for an adults-only après lounge where skiers could get more than an Irish coffee to numb their aches?
“There’s a lot that remains to be seen,” Rudolph said with a chuckle. “I guess you could say we’re waiting for the smoke to clear.”
The Colorado counties where big ski resorts are located seem to have made up their minds. The marijuana measure passed by overwhelming margins, with more support than in less visited areas.
The home county of Aspen approved the marijuana measure more than 3-to-1. More than two-thirds approved marijuana in the home county of Colorado’s largest ski resort, Vail. The home county of Telluride ski resort gave marijuana legalization its most lopsided victory, nearly 8 in 10 favouring the measure.
“Some folks might come to Colorado to enjoy some marijuana as will be their right. So what?” said Betty Aldworth, advocacy director for the Colorado marijuana campaign.
Washington state already sees a version of marijuana tourism.