[Update: Denver's 9NEWS is reporting that HB 1284 has passed and is headed for Gov. Ritter's desk.
The State House voted 46-19 on Tuesday afternoon to approve House Bill 1284. The legislation requires dispensaries to be licensed and monitored throughout the state but also gives local communities the ability to ban them.
[Check Thursday's paper for more on the bill.]
*** From Earlier Today ***
Controversial HB 1284, the attempt to issue regulations for the state's medical marijuana industry, has unexpectedly been rejected by the House by one vote, and has been moved into conference committee, where anything can happen says Sensible Colorado's Brian Vicente.
"So [committee] should actually be this afternoon. There's potential for fairly substantial changes in a conference committee. It's scary or exciting depending on what happens. Obviously tomorrow's the last day for the legislative session, so it's basically do-or-die for these guys."
Vicente says that the committee will likely be made up of members of both chambers, chosen by leadership and the bill's sponsor(s), and that a re-vote in the House and the Senate may not be required. As for what will happen?
"We shall see. They tacked on some pretty onerous stuff in conference committee for the Senate Bill 109 — that's the doctor-patient relationship bill — in conference, added the provision preventing people under 21 from going into dispensaries, even if they had their legs blown off in Iraq and were 20 years old. That's the kind of changes they're capable of, so we'll see."
*** Check back throughout the day for updates ***