White cross

Snowmass Village continues to consider retail marijuana regulations in advance of allowing pot shops in the resort.

There are still miles to go before Snowmass Village has its first retail marijuana dispensary.

While the moratorium on retail pot shops is scheduled to expire at the end of April, “it can be pushed back if we need more time to develop the regulatory framework,” town spokesman Travis Elliott said Wednesday.

Elliott said an initial review of the draft code language to regulate marijuana stores is tentatively scheduled for March 4.

“This is just a first review and putting the final language into code will require two readings of an ordinance. The goal is to have this done before the moratorium ends,” he said.

Once the regulatory framework is in place, the town will still need to develop a licensing procedure, according to Elliott. At that time, interested business owners will then be able to apply for a license but they won’t be able to open until they receive final approval, he said.

Jordan Sarick, owner of the Snowmass Center, said the current retail center has no restrictions on retail marijuana sales and “We’re going to abide with whatever law and whatever the people of Snowmass Village want.”

A joint meeting between the planning commission and town council on the Center’s land-use application is Feb. 19. The Center redevelopment calls for expanded retail, offices and 65 free market and 11 employee units.

The specter of pot sales has been controversial in Snowmass Village, in part due to the mayor’s opposition and the resort’s long-standing reputation as a place for families. As the majority of council’s opinion has prevailed, Snowmass continues to carefully wade into retail sales. Voters approved a 5 percent sales tax in November and revenue from that is projected to range between $194,967 and $584,900.

The statewide vote in 2012 that saw Colorado legalize recreational marijuana saw Snowmass Village vote 989-385 in favor of Amendment 64. The town enacted a moratorium on sales in its wake, which has been renewed several times.

Guidelines that are under consideration as part of the regulatory scheme include pot businesses not being located within 300 feet of each other. There’s also a 300-foot buffer area from licensed child care facilities in the Treehouse and the Westin Kids Club and a 200-foot buffer surrounding the Skittles lift

Madeleine Osberger is a Contributing Editor for Aspen Daily News. She can be reached at madski@aspendailynews.com or on Twitter @Madski99