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Colorado Marijuana Laws Present Challenges

Digested From “In Colorado, Legalized Green Leaves Some Landlords Seeing Red”
Mother Nature Network (02/13/14) Hickman, Matt

The opening of recreational marijuana emporiums in Colorado has resulted in a "not-so-mellow relationship" between some apartment owners and residents who are looking to smoke pot in the privacy of their rental homes. Under pressure from non-pot-smoking residents, a number of apartment owners, property management firms, and rental home owners are forbidding the use of marijuana in their buildings even though the state now legally permits it.  

Vic Sulzer, a lawyer representing the Apartment Association of Colorado, says his office has received a "steady stream of phone calls" from clients ever since Colorado's first wave of recreational pot stores officially opened earlier this month. Ultimately, he states, apartment owners do have the power to either allow or disallow toking on the premises.  In fact, if a rental agreement expressly prohibits the activity, that accord does trump Colorado state law. Sulzer explains, "A landlord's lease has a provision that prohibits whatever landlord wants to prohibit." It's also worth noting that Colorado's Clean Indoors Act prohibits smoking of any kind in common areas or within 15 feet of a building.

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