Senator Lambert, bill sponsor, presented Senate Bill 18-279. The bill allows the Institute of Cannabis Research at Colorado State University-Pueblo (CSU-Pueblo) to develop and demonstrate marijuana certification technology. The technology must include an agent applied to marijuana plants or products and a device that can scan the agent to indicate whether the plant or product was legally cultivated, manufactured, or sold. Any agents used must:
• be safe for human consumption according to Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) standards;
• contain identifiers that are traceable using distributed ledger (blockchain) technology; and
• be accessible to law enforcement agencies and the Department of Revenue (DOR).
After the technology is developed and the Marijuana Enforcement Division (MED) in the DOR is satisfied that the technology is effective, the MED may authorize production of the marijuana certification technology beyond the initial demonstration. If production is authorized, the MED may promulgate rules to require licensees to use the technology. The marijuana certification technology may be made available to law enforcement agencies and the MED for purchase and the MED may make the data it collects available to law enforcement agencies at no cost. Law enforcement agencies may apply to the Department of Local Affairs (DOLA) for financial assistance to purchase the marijuana certification technology from the Gray and Black Market Marijuana Enforcement Grant Program.