Judge Hoak upholds BOCC decision for retail marijuana

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Marijuana Plant Source: Wikimedia Commons

On Friday, Judge Mary Hoak ruled in favor of the Grand County Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) and upheld their decision to grant a retail marijuana license to Serene Wellness in unincorporated Winter Park in August of 2016.

The Town of Winter Park challenged the decision and filed a suit against the BOCC citing that Serene Wellness would cause irreparable harm in its proposed location at the Valley Hi Motel in Winter Park – even though the Valley Hi Motel is located in an unincorporated area that was never annexed.

The Town of Winter Park was unable to prove that allowing Serene Wellness to open would cause irreparable harm to Winter Park. Judge Hoak felt that the Town of Winter Park had a lot of speculation about the harm that could be caused and was unable to prove their points of the need for additional law enforcement, tainting the family image of Winter Park, and sending the wrong message as individuals enter into Winter Park.

The Town of Winter Park will not receive any of the tax benefits from the opening of Serene Wellness. There is also a Serene Wellness in Fraser and the Town of Fraser taxes the sale of marijuana an additional 5 percent.Grand County has also discussed taxing marijuana, but has not moved forward on the topic. Currently, the county is under a marijuana moratorium