By Richard Farrell
The motto of The Centennial State is “nil sine numine,” which means nothing without help from the powers above. Providence also means prudence, foresight and sagacity. Colorado had all three in abundance when it came to recognizing citizens’ rights to marijuana. Its wise decision has also sparked new business opportunities.
We reported on the The MaryJane Group’s (OTCQB: MJMJ) entry into B&B’s, remarking that we expected more activity on that front. Yesterday, Forbes appeared to agree with us, although it took a more cautious line. Contributor Andrew Bender built his story around the fact that the Denver International Airport reported record traffic this past January to March, while online searches for accommodation were up by 25%.
It is unsurprising to learn that real estate demand has picked up too, given the number of media reports of parents pulling up their roots, so kids with seizures can benefit from medical marijuana in Colorado and ease their misery. Tour operators are also cashing in with firms like Colorado Green Tours offering a wider range of attractions than we had previously thought.
Tempting cannatrips include ski vacations, mead tours and grow room visits. Those into marijuana just for fun can choose between adrenalin highs and a range of concerts and celebrations. From what we’ve heard, these events are selling fast.
Rich Grant, spokesperson for Visit Denver, told the Forbes columnist that he is less than convinced the marijuana miracle has come true. He says he has not seen anything like the booking activity when there’s a big convention in town. Moreover, the airport also teemed with tourists chasing an exceptionally good snow season, not to mention two playoff games for the Denver Broncos.
On the far side of the debate, Colorado marijuana dealers report a definite uptick in sales at ski resorts, and confirm that the Mile High Stadium was more than that in name during the football games. The clincher will be whether these trends continue throughout the year.
Sal Pace, the Pueblo County, Colorado commissioner, is appreciative of the income marijuana liberalization will bring to his community. “One million dollars is a lot of money to us,” Pace told CBC News. “Like most local governments for the past four or five years, we’ve been dealing with a very difficult budget crisis,” he says. “This is the first new infusion of revenue for our county in a while.”
Once a month a marijuana special agent books a conference room at the courthouse and receives retailers who turn up with wads of cash. “It’s pretty simple,” Anita Garcia assured CBC News. “The longest part is counting … If they’re coming in with $20 bills that can take a while” even with a counting machine.
There are currently six Pueblo County marijuana stores serving 160,000 residents. The county envisions that they will soon fill their maximum of 10 stores. Investors who moved quickly into Colorado are making money. The first two liberated states are up and running. The other 48 may yield similar jackpots.