This Makes 4 Times: Senators Remain Unconvinced That Marijuana Impairs Like Alcohol
Washington state voters seemed OK with instituting a THC blood limit for drivers when they approved limited legalization measure Initiative 502 last fall. But Colorado lawmakers seem to want a little more proof.
A blood limit for drivers was rejected on Monday in the Colorado Senate for the fourth time. Skepticism on the applicability of alcohol-style THC blood limits helped defeat even a watered-down form of the measure.
The Senate Judiciary Committee, on a 4-1 vote, rejected the blood standard after a long hearing “that has become something of an annual tradition in the Senate,” reports The Associated Press. Each of the past four legislative sessions, the lawmakers have looked at the scientific evidence for and against using marijuana content in the blood to determine if drivers are impaired.
“This is a significant public safety concern,” claimed Matt Durkin, a state assistant attorney who supports the marijuana DUI bill. The bill, like Washington state’s legalization measure I-502, would have limited drivers to five nanograms per milliliter of blood for THC, the main psychoactive ingredient in cannabis.
Durkin claimed that recreational marijuana use will rise because of Colorado’s vote last year to defy federal marijuana laws by legalizing small amounts of cannabis for people over 21 years old.
Washington state voters also legalized small amounts of pot for adults last year, but unlike Colorado’s law, Washington’s doesn’t allow home cultivation, and the law includes a 5 ng/ml THC blood limit for drivers.