Colorado Springs mayor John Suthers has traveled to Arizona for a fund-raiser for a group who opposes the legalization effort in Arizona. Suthers tells Arizonans that they should not legalize cannabis the way Colorado did in 2012. He blames the cannabis for a host of the city’s problems, including the burgeoning homeless population. He fails to point out that Colorado’s economy has been booming since the legalization vote was cast, as thousands of new folks are coming to Colorado and are driving prices for real estate up. He fails to mention the tax revue stream that legalization has put millions of dollars into the school systems here, so much revenue that it is limited by the state’s TABOR (Tax Payor Bill of Rights) amendment and Colorado has had to vote on what to do with the excess revenue.
Suthers has attacked the marijuana industry in Colorado Springs by forcing the cannabis clubs, which have sprung up around town since Amendment 64 passed in 2012, to close their doors within 8 years. He has vowed to shut down the medical cannabis dispensaries which are all over town. He is clearly going against the will of the voters and we expect to vote him out when his term ends, along with the entire city council who passed a ban on recreational shops in Colorado Springs, all the while stating that the tax revenue lost is not that much. Our city has a myriad of problems and John Suthers is not addressing any of them, but scapegoating the marijuana industry is his forte.
Coloradans have polled such that they would not repeal Amendment 64 and are of the opinion that politicians like John Suthers are out of step with the voters’ wishes. My opinion is that he should stay in Colorado Springs and address the real problems of our town rather than traveling to Arizona to “preach” against marijuana legalization.