Pubdate: Thu, 06 Mar 2014
Source: Denver Post (CO)
Copyright: 2014 The Denver Post Corp
Author: John Ingold
Page: 2A


Group Urges More Money for Marijuana Enforcement

Colorado's police chiefs are asking the state for more money to pay
for marijuana enforcement, saying they are "disappointed" in Gov. John
Hickenlooper's plan for how to spend marijuana tax revenue.

In a letter sent to Hickenlooper earlier this week, the Colorado
Association of Chiefs of Police said the governor's plan contains no
money specifically designated for local law enforcement agencies. The
letter asks Hickenlooper to support creating a grant program for
police departments to cover extra costs related to marijuana

"Many of our local law enforcement agencies have diverted staff from
other operations into marijuana enforcement, leaving gaps in other
service areas as a direct result of marijuana legalization," the
letter states.

Among the things, the chiefs' association says money could be used
for: training officers to better identify stoned drivers, purchasing
"oral fluid testing" equipment that could be used for research
purposes at impaired-driving checkpoints and creating a statewide
database of marijuana crimes.

The budget proposal Hickenlooper sent to the legislature last month
predicts medical and recreational marijuana revenues of more than $133
million in the next fiscal year. Hickenlooper has proposed spending
the bulk of the money-more than $85 million this fiscal year and next
- - on youth marijuana use prevention and addiction treatment. A little
more than $3 million is designated for statewide law enforcement and
public safety programs.

In an e-mailed response to the chiefs' association, Department of
Public Safety executive director Jim Davis asked for a meeting to learn 

"We are confident that once we fully understand the needs and plans,
we can submit and support supplemental funding requests," Davis wrote.
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