The cannabis industry in Colorado is increasing its quarrel against Colorado’s efforts to adjust the application of pesticides on marijuana. After passing in the state’s House of Representatives, a bill that would have codified Governor John Hickenlooper’s November executive order was killed in a Senate committee a week ago. The executive order told state agencies that any cannabis cultivated with pesticides that have not been approved is a threat to public safety and should be taken out of commerce and eradicated. Those who turned down the bill in the state Senate Veterans & Military Affairs Committee explained Hickenlooper’s predictions as “unreasonable” and “unconstitutional.”
“It is my position that government should not take someone’s private property and destroy it,” Senator Jerry Sonnenberg, R-Sterling, said. “The property owner should be able to see if there are other avenues to dispose of the plants, and it should be their responsibility to destroy their own property. … I also think that it is unreasonable to have a zero limit rather than an acceptable limit according to like plants and uses.”
Senator Owen Hill, R-Colorado Springs, stated that the “government is abusing and overstepping its power when they are destroying agricultural crops. This bill would have furthered unconstitutional government destruction of private property.”
Hickenlooper’s best marijuana official called the bill’s collapse “disappointing” and stated that Colorado will keep going with its actions, including more than twenty recalls because of pesticides in just two and a half months.
“Pesticide use is a public health issue, and we wanted clear enforcement penalties and due process provided by the legislature,” Andrew Freedman, Colorado’s director of marijuana coordination, said. “We’ll continue to enforce proper pesticide use to protect consumer and worker safety under the Pesticide Applicators’ Act and other existing statutory authority. Absent this legislation, the governor’s (executive order) remains in place.”
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