A strong September
After hitting a calendar-year low of 14,388 patients in May, the number of people in El Paso County on Colorado's medical-marijuana registry hit a high of 15,591 as of Sept. 30, the most recent numbers available. That's good enough for 14 percent of all patients statewide, second only to Denver County's 17 percent.
Statewide totals reflect a similar dip and rebound: 112,862 Coloradans are listed on the registry as of September, as opposed to 105,886 in May.
The numbers will continue to be interesting to watch as recreational marijuana takes off in some places, including Denver, and people possibly decide there's no reason to either be listed somewhere or pay an application fee for the pleasure.
Of course, the latter might be changed this week by the Colorado Board of Health, which meets at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 18, on the issue. The advocating Cannabis Therapy Institute say the state should eliminate any fee until it can guarantee patient privacy from unauthorized access by other departments.
In other news, the city of Colorado Springs collected $122,295 in marijuana-related sales tax in September, slightly down from last month's all-time high of $126,948 but an improvement of 29.75 percent over September 2012.
Seed to something
Last Wednesday, the Colorado Department of Revenue finally unveiled its much-vaunted "seed to sale" tracking system that was partially completed in recent years, then derailed by a lack of funding. Called Marijuana Inventory Tracking Solutions (MITS), the system uses radio frequency identification (RFID) tags and was developed by Florida-based Franwell Inc.
As the Denver Post noted, some center owners are upset that it uses expensive proprietary tags, and is currently incompatible with some inventory programs commonly in use. Regardless, as the Marijuana Enforcement Division notes in bold on its website, "You must complete training and have all of your mits account activated and functional by December 31, 2013."
• Opening with a graphic that says, "It is illegal to consume marijuana in public," the city of Denver released a website that seems mostly designed to tell tourists what they can't do: colorado.gov/marijuanainfodenver.
• On Saturday, Dec. 21, Studio A64 (332 E. Colorado Ave., studioa64.com, $5) will host "an evening of peaceful revolutionary hip hop ... for the socially conscious and Zenmatic-ly aware." Starting at 6 p.m., MC Tom, MC Gibberish and others will perform.
• Club 710 (360 Winters Drive, 321/626-9469) looks to hit the holiday spirit at 7:10 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 22. Then, you'll find vaporizers, dabs and gifts. Tickets are $10 to $20.