Created: Thu, 21 Aug 2014 11:20:00 MST
Updated: Fri, 22 Aug 2014 07:25:53 MST
DEBEQUE, Colo. - Mesa County could be opening its first recreation marijuana shop as early as Nov. 1.
Two Western Slope investors have already leased a building in DeBeque they plan to transform into a marijuana dispensary named Kush Gardens.
The dispensary’s application is currently under review by town officials. It’s the only application submitted to the town after months of debate over how marijuana stores will be zoned and regulated.
Some citizens wanted to the pot shop to be located in the downtown core to force people to drive into the town and reinvigorate the economy, but the close proximity of the elementary school in the small town became a sticking point for many.
The owners of Kush Gardens avoided the issue and located their business at 4550 Highway 6, right off the freeway. This prevents much direct downtown revitalization, but DeBeque officials are hoping to implement additional taxes on marijuana sales to bring economic benefits.
“Let’s say Joe or Josephine marijuana smoker comes in and buys marijuana from a dispensary. They'll be charged 5 percent [tax], plus the 2 percent [sales tax already in place],” said town manager Guy Patterson.
There are only two more meetings the dispensary investors must have with the town of DeBeque before they are given the green light. The owners of Kush Gardens are already making plans to open since the city has expressed willingness to move forward with approving the application.