There’s been an unsettling new trend in certain cities of Colorado to majorly lower the total limit of plants that can be grown in one household, despite the number of adults that live there. The newest town to vote for this restriction is Parker, Colorado. The implications of these decisions are pretty clear, communities are cracking down on both legal and illegal home grows. The 12 plant per household restriction for Parker will be in place for both medical and recreational users. The Parker Town Council gave initial approval of these ordinances, but the final vote on the measures is scheduled for October 3rd. Not only is 12 plants not nearly enough for many medical marijuana patients by themselves, but to have a zero tolerance policy that doesn’t at all take into account the number of adults or patients per household, is ludicrous. Unfortunately this new ordinance is certainly not the first of its kind and probably won’t be the last.
These decisions to restrict the number of plants per household are knee jerk reactions to minor issues. Granted there have been some large illegal grows that have led to odor nuisance complaints, and compromised electrical systems that put houses at risk of fire. However, going after citizen’s and patient’s Colorado Constitutional rights so rashly is unjust. Not only is it a blatant disservice to patients that need more plants for concentrates, but also the clear issues that arise from more than two adults living together. How can we let something that is such a common occurrence be grounds for having our rights stripped from us? This is not an isolated case, Colorado Springs passed a 12 plant cap in May, and Denver has a limit law as well. The current lawsuit challenging the Colorado Springs law for violating citizens’ constitutional rights, could set a precedent statewide.
Douglas County led the way last month with a very similar residential grow ordinance that put a 12 plant limit on every household, including patients and caregivers. They even took things a step further by banning the use of butane and similar gas solvents to make cannabis concentrates. This trend has to be stomped out as soon as possible, before Colorado’s Constitution gets walked all over and starts to lose all meaning. It took a lot of work to get both the medical and recreational amendments passed in Colorado, so we can’t let them undo everything that’s been accomplished. This is a matter of personal liberties. There is absolutely no reason that a patient in Colorado shouldn’t be able to grow their own medicine, despite the number of plants it might take or the number of adults they live with. Hopefully this historic case in Colorado Springs will put an end to this new misguided pattern.