Correction: The story has been updated to correct that this is a proposal within City and County of Denver, and to accurately describe the process of announcing and approving the proposal.
DENVER (KDVR) — The Denver Department of Excise and Licenses is proposing changes to encourage more pot deliveries.
On July 19, the Office of Marijuana Policy announced the proposed changes to the industry at a public meeting, to discuss ways to “achieve a more equitable access to the industry” in Denver.
After the passing of a 2021 bill that allowed customers to receive pot right at their doorstep, records show few marijuana sellers used the new opportunity.
According to the department, fees were the largest barrier for businesses. Annual delivery license fees took a chunk from local businesses. Now, a new proposal slashes those amounts, some fees dropped 98% in price. They include:
- Dropping the one-time application fee from $500 to $25
- Dropping the annual delivery license fee for stores from $2,000 to $25
- Dropping the annual delivery license fee for transporters from $2,000 to $25
The propsals will update Council Bill 21-0216. The bill was passed in 2021 by the city council and Mayor Hancock, and allowed the delivery of weed to a customer’s home.
Why are delivery sales not on the rise?
The ability to receive weed without ever leaving your home may seem like a smart business venture, so why aren’t more dispensaries opting in?
According to the Department of Excise and Licenses, the program has been monitored for the past year and few stores chose to engage in working with pot transporters to deliver their product.
Data from the department shows only nine stores are actively conducting deliveries, and only 18 out of 207 Denver locations have delivery permits. Delivery consistently accounts for less than half of 1% of sales in Denver, according to the department.
In comparison, Aurora has 24 cannabis stores and 19 of those locations have delivery permits.
The department correlates the lack of permits to the large yearly fees.
Latest proposals to better delivery services
In order to address the first-year hurdles of this latest bill, the proposals would not only reduce fees, but they would also replace the three-year exclusivity period.
The current bill states that transporters have the exclusive right to deliver pot up until 2024 when stores could take over. The newest proposal would give permanent exclusivity for transporters to conduct deliveries on behalf of dispensaries.
This change would require stores to pursue contracts with outside delivery people.