US (CO): Governor unveils online tool to track cannabis achievements

Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) launched an online tool on Monday that will enable members of the public to keep track of what the state government is doing to attain its goals, which include taking the marijuana industry to greater heights.

The goals have been categorized into six groups. These are marijuana, education and workforce, criminal justice, tax reform and economic development, and energy and renewables.

The online tool, called “the governor’s dashboard,” outlines targets or priorities for each of those six areas. For example, under the cannabis category, the governor undertakes to operationalize the home delivery of marijuana in accordance with the law he signed last month. He also promises to see marijuana companies listed on stock exchanges, as well as working for a 20 percent increase in the number of financial institutions serving cannabis companies. Gov. Polis also wants to establish the state as a national leader in research, production and processing of industrial hemp.

Speaking at the launch of the dashboard, the governor revealed that he is happy to avail that platform since it will ensure accountability and transparency on all matters affecting Coloradans.

The agriculture department will do a lot to facilitate the attainment of the goals on hemp. A three-year development plan for this sector shows that the governor wants to see the indoor production of hemp increase to 10 million square feet from the current 7.67 million square feet. The plan also states that outdoor cultivation should increase to more than 60,000 square feet from the current 21,000 square feet.

To attain these lofty goals, the state plans to submit a plan for the regulation of hemp to the U.S. Department of Agriculture for approval so that large scale production can begin. The state will also support farmer-owned cooperatives in addition to other interventions to encourage industrial hemp value addition.

Polis has always believed that the marijuana industry is yet to reach its full economic potential in Colorado and he has done what he can to promote the industry. For example, he signed bills to allow social consumption sites and regulate home delivery of marijuana products.

Last month, the state government released a report showing that more than a billion dollars had so far been collected by the state as cannabis taxes, fees and other collections. It is therefore expected that the working group formed to steer the state towards attaining all the goals listed on the dashboard will not have any excuses for not doing the work assigned to them.

Source CNW


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