Capitol staffers totally used to watching people gather to talk weed

Capitol staffers take in the Civic Center 4/20 weed party, April 20, 2017. (John Tomasic/The Colorado Statesman)

Capitol staffers take in the Civic Center 4/20 weed party, April 20, 2017. (John Tomasic/The Colorado Statesman)

The booming sound from the Civic Center pro-pot 4/20 rally, where thousands gathered Thursday to celebrate Colorado’s legal weed, forced a hastily called state House press conference into a windowless side room.

On the floor of the House lawmakers were debating Senate Bill 17, which would allow residents suffering from PTSD and with a recommendation from a doctor to buy marijuana without paying retail taxes. The debate took off when the issue of underage users came up. The debate stretched on for an hour. The Bill passed. As it stands, minors with PTSD have to get a recommendation from their attending pediatrician — and not from one of the state’s long list of pot doctors.

The bill has to pass a third reading in the House and then be approved by the Senate. As lawmakers and reporters watched the vote-tally screen light up, the strains of Bob Marley sounded across the street.

Staffers later sat out on the balcony of the chamber watching the revelers across the street. Clouds of smoke rose and mixed with the misty air and then rain began to fall.

john@coloradostatesman.com

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