Sunday, July 21, 2024

Castle Rock considers regulations for psychedelic mushroom businesses – Castle Rock News Press

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Castle Rock Town Council is working to pass a law to regulate the operations of psychedelic mushrooms and other natural medicine businesses in town. 

In 2022, Colorado voters approved the decriminalization of the use of psilocybin and other plants for people 21 and older. Since then, the legislature passed laws that outline legal natural medicine businesses.

Unlike the legalization of marijuana, municipalities can’t prohibit natural medicine businesses, but they can regulate where the businesses are located and some operational elements, like setting business hours.

The law allows for natural healing centers, where people use natural medicines under facilitation, and natural medicine businesses for cultivation, manufacturing and testing. Selling psilocybin or other natural medicines is still illegal. 

Castle Rock Town Attorney Mike Hyman said the natural medicine market will look different from the retail and medical marijuana markets.

“You’re not going to go in and buy your bag of mushrooms and go home,” Hyman said.

Castle Rock’s council is looking at an ordinance to limit natural medicine businesses and healing centers to light and general industrial-zoned areas and require they be at least 1,000 feet from schools, childcare facilities or residences.

The proposed ordinance would severely limit where natural medicine businesses could open. 

A map from Castle Rock town staff shows, in purple, the limited area where natural medicine businesses would be allowed under a proposed ordinance. The town council is moving forward with an ordinance to regulate natural medicine businesses, which facilitate the use, cultivation or manufacturing of psilocybin or other plants.
Courtesy Town of Castle Rock

The ordinance would also restrict business hours to 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays.

Councilmembers expressed disagreement with allowing natural medicine businesses in town, saying they wish Castle Rock had the local control to prohibit them. 

“As a home rule, folks, I wouldn’t want it at all,” councilmember Tim Dietz said. 

Council will vote on the proposed ordinance at its July 16 meeting.

In February, Parker passed similar restrictions, limiting natural medicine cultivation and manufacturing businesses to industrial zoning and placing a 1,000-foot boundary around schools, childcare facilities and residences.

Parker allows natural healing centers in business and commercial areas.

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