Competing ballot measures could decide Englewood’s marijuana future


Smoking marijuana

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ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Peggy Bogaard-Lapp is going door to door in her Englewood neighborhood with a petition that needs 597 signatures to get on the November ballot.  Her goal?

“To stop the sale of marijuana in our city,” said Bogaard-Lapp, who is pushing two measures at once.

The first would prevent recreational marijuana from coming to Englewood. The second would shut down the four medical marijuana businesses that already operate in the city.

“Our neighborhood is full of children and 300 feet from my house, a shop that sells (marijuana) is going to increase traffic from people I may not want in my neighborhood,” said Bogaard-Lapp, referring to a licensed dispensary that’s scheduled to open behind her house later this year.

Pro-marijuana action

At the same time, pro-marijuana forces are pursuing their own ballot measure to bring recreational marijuana to Englewood.

The group calls itself Responsible Englewood.

“We hope to give the Citizens of Englewood what they have already voted twice for: Safe, regulated and responsible access to recreational marijuana while at the same time providing the city with a new source of revenue," the group said in a statement.

A spokeswoman for Englewood’s city manager said in an email that recreational marijuana could generate $500,000 a year in revenue. This at a time that the city’s largest corporate employer, Sports Authority, has just declared bankruptcy.

Amie Milsap is a medical marijuana patient who said she will be voting to legalize all forms of pot in Englewood.

“I have multiple sclerosis and spinal stenosis as well as seizures and that really helps me,” Milsap said.

Voters said 'no' to pot ban in the past

Three years ago, the Englewood City Council asked voters if it should ban recreational marijuana and by 269 votes out of more than 7,300 ballots cast, voters said no.  At the time they were OK with recreational pot.

The opposing sides have until Aug. 10 to collect enough signatures for the November election.

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