Sexy Pizza and allies file suit against Colorado so their customers can use weed and alcohol

Backers of Denver’s Ballot Initiative 300 want to sue the state over new rules that stop bars, restaurants and other liquor licensed establishments from allowing any marijuana use.

Liz hits a joint at Chong's Choice launch party in RiNo. (Chloe Aiello/Denverite)

Backers of Denver’s Ballot Initiative 300 intend to sue the state of Colorado over new rules that stop bars, restaurants and other liquor licensed establishments from allowing any marijuana use.

The Denver Neighborhood Social Consumption Committee, along with Initiative 300 proponents and two Sexy Pizza locations, filed a suit against the Colorado Department of Revenue last week. A district court judge is scheduled to review the case Wednesday.

Advocates of the initiative wanted to open cannabis consumption programs to bars, restaurants and just about any kind of business that doesn’t sell marijuana to apply for a cannabis consumption permit under the Neighborhood-Supported Cannabis Consumption Pilot Program. But just days after Denver voters approved Initiative 300, the Liquor Enforcement Division (part of the Colorado Department of Revenue) passed “Regulation 47-900(E),” making it illegal for marijuana and alcohol to be consumed within the same businesses.

“We believe the rule was a direct response to Initiative 300,” Emmett Reistroffer told Westword. Reistroffer, who sits on Denver’s Social Consumption Advisory Committee, was the campaign manager of Initiative 300 and is a plaintiff in the case.

He and the other plaintiffs argue in their complaint against the state that the Liquor Enforcement Division didn’t have the authority to make the rule in the first place. The complaint also states the rule is void because by the time it became effective, it conflicted with other existing laws, including Initiated Ordinance 300. The group is hoping the court will void the rule.

A judge will have to decide whether to allow the case against the state to go forward.

Business & data reporter Adrian D. Garcia can be reached via email at agarcia@denverite.com or twitter.com/adriandgarcia.

Subscribe to Denverite’s newsletter here.

Adrian D. Garcia

Author: Adrian D. Garcia

Adrian D. Garcia is on business and trends for Denverite, serves as treasurer for the Colorado chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists and was recently elected to the board of the Denver Press Club. He can be reached at agarcia@denverite.com.