Marijuana Delivery and Hospitality Businesses
2019 was a big year for cannabis legislation in Colorado. Among other notable changes, the Colorado legislature passed bills that permit marijuana hospitality businesses and marijuana delivery businesses.
The delivery legislation, HB19-1234, establishes a marijuana delivery permit to allow for the delivery of regulated marijuana to private residences. Delivery permits for medical marijuana centers are already available, and permits for recreational marijuana stores will be available starting January 1, 2021. The legislation also makes delivery permits available to licensed medical and retail marijuana transporters that have no ownership interest in a cultivation or retail facility.
The hospitality legislation, HB19-1230, establishes two new types of marijuana business licenses. The first is for Marijuana Hospitality Businesses that allow consumption of marijuana on business premises. Marijuana Hospitality Businesses may be mobile. For example, a limousine company could potentially obtain a Marijuana Hospitality Business license and permit the consumption of marijuana in its vehicles. The second is for Retail Marijuana Hospitality and Sales Businesses that sell and permit the consumption of retail marijuana on business premises. Unlike Marijuana Hospitality Businesses, Retail Marijuana Hospitality and Sales Businesses must be in a fixed location. Importantly, because these types of businesses would clearly run into issues with the Colorado Clean Indoor Air Act, the legislation also establishes certain Colorado Clean Air Act exceptions.
HB19-1234 and HB19-1230 represent great opportunities for individuals or businesses involved, or hoping to get involved, in the marijuana industry. However, like most marijuana legislation, the bills contain a number of restrictions and regulations, grant rulemaking authority to the Marijuana Enforcement Division to adopt further regulations, and they create “opt-in” regimes. In other words, unless local jurisdictions “opt-in” and expressly permit marijuana delivery and hospitality businesses, delivery and hospitality businesses remain prohibited in those jurisdictions. In addition, under both bills, local jurisdictions have the authority to regulate the permitted activity in a stricter manner than the state does.
As such, because of the highly regulated nature of the marijuana industry in general and the complexity of these two pieces of legislation, you should consult with an attorney prior to making any marijuana business decisions. In addition, because local jurisdictions must “opt-in” to delivery and hospitality, localities should consult with their attorney and be prepared for the possibility that they will face pressure from industry activists, local marijuana businesses, and the state to move forward with the adoption of delivery and hospitality regulation over the next year.
Garfield & Hecht, P.C. attorneys are available to assist with matter regarding the establishment or sale of a marijuana businesses as well as marijuana licensing and regulations. For further information contact David McConaughy (, 970-925-1936, ext. 810) or Macklin Henderson (, 970-925-1936, ext. 807).