On Wednesday, Governor Jared Polis and the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT) announced the launch of the Cannabis Business Office, housed within the Business Support and Rural Prosperity division.
“The Cannabis Business Office shows our administration’s focus on growing this thriving industry that supports jobs and our economy,” said Governor Jared Polis. “This office will offer tools like technical help and improve access to money for businesses. Where the federal government has fallen behind, Colorado will lead. Colorado is, and always has been, the best place to live, work, grow and sell cannabis.”
This newly created office was established through Senate Bill 21-111 and funded by the Marijuana Tax Cash Fund. The office will create new economic development opportunities, local job creation and community growth in the cannabis vertical market for the diverse population of Colorado.
The Cannabis Business Office will:
- Provide loans to social equity licensees for seed capital and ongoing business expenses
- Offer grants to social equity licensees to support innovation and job creation and organizations that support marijuana businesses to be used to support innovation and job creation of social equity licensees
- Support cannabis business owners with technical assistance, prioritizing social equity licensees who have been awarded a loan or grant through the program.
Governor Jared Polis reinforced his administration’s stated goal of establishing Colorado as the national leader in innovative and balanced cannabis policy, focusing on finance, workforce development, diversity, education, research and development, regulatory innovation, and entrepreneurship. The creation of this office further supports the Governor’s initiative.
“The Cannabis Business Office will provide novel and ambitious programming to provide more equitable opportunity in the cannabis industry,” said Tristan Watkins, Ph.D., Colorado’s first Cannabis Program Manager. “As the office expands, we are confident it will further solidify Colorado as the leader in the nation’s cannabis industry.”
Those interested in learning more or who want to stay abreast of programming, technical assistance and funding opportunities can sign up for the state’s Cannabis Business Office monthly newsletter.