Decriminalization of pot no closer to reality in Leadville |

Decriminalization of pot no closer to reality in Leadville

Caitlin Row
summit daily news

LEADVILLE – Though it seems there’s still public interest in putting marijuana decriminalization on the November ballot, Leadville city clerk Joe Swyers hasn’t seen solid evidence.

“Until something shows up on my desk, there’s nothing out there other than rumors,” Swyers said. “They have to have the petition signed off by me before they start collecting signatures. I haven’t seen such a form.”

Because Leadville’s city council didn’t approve putting marijuana decriminalization on its November ballot in February, Leadville residents must now create a petition to get the item placed on the ballot.

Swyers added that no petition has been submitted to the city yet, but there has been interest.

“Anybody who wants to get a ballot issues needs to get cracking,” he said.

That’s because Swyers must have it certified and to the county clerk and recorder by Sept. 3. To make that possible, city council needs to act on the petition by the end of August. Therefore, the petition would need to be into Swyers by mid-August.

Public interest in decriminalization for Leadville comes on the heels of a similar action in Breckenridge – its decriminalization became official Jan. 1. The Town of Breckenridge’s code no longer criminalizes adult personal possession of less than 1 ounce of marijuana for private use. The Breckenridge Town Council voted to put marijuana decriminalization on the ballot last year, and the final vote in November 2009 resulted in more than 70 percent in favor of decriminalization.

Breckenridge was also the first Summit County town to draft a set of regulations for medical marijuana dispensaries.

SDN reporter Caitlin Row can be reached at (970) 668-4633 or at