As Colorado opens up marijuana sales to the public, lawmakers around the state are working to find ways to regulate it. In Manitou Springs, which is located near Colorado Springs, the City Council voted to allow only two retail marijuana shops in the city. However, in addition to the costs of operating a business, owners are often subject to licensing regulations and costly fees.

Although the Manitou Springs City Council approved retail marijuana sales nearly a month ago, there are still no shops there. The owner of Maggie’s Farm, a medical marijuana dispensary already established in Colorado Springs and another nearby location, plans to open a shop in Manitou Springs as soon as the licensing process is complete. In addition to the licensing fees, which can be as high as $14,000, the owner must also cover the $500 application fees. Although another owner reportedly has plans to open a second shop in Manitou Springs, it is unknown if he has faced any challenges during the licensing process.

Opponents of retail marijuana sales argue that opening up marijuana shops could be detrimental to the town, and some are working on a petition to enable residents to vote on the matter.

It is impossible to predict whether the two marijuana shops in town will be successful, but the owner of Maggie’s Farm said he is hopeful about his Maggie’s Farm shop, which he plans to open in April. For retail store owners, licensing is an important part of their day-to-day operations. Business owners who need guidance in this area may want to seek the help of an attorney.

Source: The Gazette, “Licensing process delaying Manitou Springs marijuana sales,” Matt Steiner, Feb. 3, 2014