The Colorado Department of Revenue Marijuana Enforcement Division (the “MED”) has responded to last week’s news that Attorney General Jeff Sessions had rescinded previous guidance regarding marijuana enforcement, including the Cole Memo.
The text of the bulletin reads:
January 5, 2018
INDUSTRY‐WIDE BULLETIN: 18‐01
RE: Yesterday’s Announcement from the U.S. Department of Justice
Dear Marijuana Industry Stakeholders,
Yesterday, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued a memo rescinding the Cole Memorandum, which
has provided important guidance for the Marijuana Enforcement Division’s (MED) regulation of the
marijuana industry over the last four and a half years. Key state officials, including the Governor’s Office
and Mike Hartman (the State Licensing Authority and Department of Revenue’s Executive Director) are
engaged and working through policy implications for Colorado.
The Cole Memo was foundational in guiding our efforts to regulate the commercial marijuana industry,
and our focus will continue to be the public health and public safety of all Coloradans and visitors to our
state. The principles set forth in the Cole Memo will continue to serve as our guideposts for amending
and creating our regulatory infrastructure. Yesterday’s decision does not alter the strength of our
resolve to keep marijuana out of the hands of children and criminals enterprises, prevent public health
consequences associated with marijuana use, and prevent diversion to the illicit market. This is a
renewed opportunity for the licensed community in our state to display the effectiveness of the
commercial regulated system for tracking, testing and taxing marijuana that has made Colorado the
worldwide regulatory and market leader.
We will continue to do our job as the voters of Colorado and the General Assembly have directed. We
remain committed to working with our stakeholders, including our law enforcement partners, to
enhance our regulatory system, to develop and implement fair and sensible rules, and to pursue
enforcement activities that promote public safety. We appreciate your continued efforts to support
these commitments as responsible members of the licensed community through strict compliance with
statutes and regulations.