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How Legalized Cannabis is Affecting the Construction Industry Part 1

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For better or worse, legalized cannabis (or marijuana) is impacting not just construction workers, but construction opportunities in general. This is an ever-changing issue in Colorado, and it’s imperative that you stay up to date on news regarding construction and marijuana. In this two-part article, a Denver construction attorney at Cotney Construction Law will be discussing the effect that legalized cannabis is having on the construction industry. For any and all of your construction-related legal needs, consult with one of our experienced Denver construction attorneys.

Storefronts and Grow Facilities

As marijuana becomes legalized in an increasing number of states, there will be more and more construction opportunities. But with these opportunities there comes unique challenges. For example, a construction company may be contracted to build grow facilities that require greenhouses with ample artificial and natural lighting. Construction for these facilities will need an increased focus on power, water, ventilation, and heating. A construction firm may also be contracted to build a unique storefront that focuses on security while being mindful of all state and federal laws. Construction for the above spaces will be a challenge since grow spaces and storefronts are often made from repurposed warehouses and abandoned retail spaces.

The Hurdles of Cannabis Construction

While there are a growing number of construction opportunities resulting from the legalization of marijuana, they are not without their obstacles. The main issue is that marijuana is still listed as an illegal Schedule I drug by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). Even if marijuana is legal in your state, the federal government can seize property related to cannabis at any time. Additionally, tax laws prohibit businesses from deducting expenses related to marijuana, which can result in exorbitant taxes and profit loss. This all makes financing a cannabis construction project difficult as banks aren’t usually willing to invest in a project that is possibly unprofitable and subject to forfeiture.

As mentioned above, the laws regarding legalized cannabis are constantly changing, especially in Colorado. Given that retail marijuana in Colorado is a $6 billion dollar industry, it’s important that you partner with a law firm that is familiar with all of the issues affecting construction companies, including cannabis construction. Partner with the Denver construction lawyers at Cotney Construction Law and ensure that your business is prepared no matter what the future of Colorado law entails.

For information on legalized cannabis in the construction industry, please read part two.

If you would like to speak with a Denver construction lawyer, please contact us today.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.