Denver opens its first Social Equity Technical Assistance program for aspiring entrepreneurs in the cannabis industry

Denver opens its first Social Equity Technical Assistance program for aspiring entrepreneurs in the cannabis industry
CANNANNEW REPORT

DENVER – June 23, 2022 – Denver Economic Development & Opportunity (DEDO) has launched a targeted entrepreneurial assistance program for aspiring cannabis business owners that is specifically designed to boost ownership among individuals disproportionately impacted by marijuana prohibition and enforcement. Funded by $500,000 of the city’s retail marijuana special sales tax revenues, the program seeks to train and elevate Denver residents who meet the State of Colorado’s definition of a social equity applicant in the cannabis industry. Through a competitive bidding process, the city has selected The Color of Cannabis as its program partner, a local woman-owned firm experienced in helping cannabis newcomers understand and navigate entry into the industry—including the many regulatory, legal, financial, and logistical challenges such as identifying suitable real estate. Because of federal prohibition, marijuana businesses often cannot obtain a traditional bank loan for startup costs, and owners of marijuana businesses cannot deduct their business expenses on their taxes as a typical entrepreneur can. Access to the industry is thus limited to individuals who have capital to invest or alternative resources for startup funds, and substantial industry-specific technical knowledge is critical to business success. “As part of our extensive social equity efforts in partnership with the cannabis industry, we’re pleased to now fund free training for social equity applicants,” Mayor Michael B. Hancock said. “Denver set the standard for successful cannabis regulations as the first city with legalized sales in America. Creating and improving equitable access for all to enter this industry, especially those disproportionally impacted by the war on drugs, remains our priority.” Following the state definition of a social equity applicant, Denver is seeking aspiring social equity cannabis entrepreneur applicants who meet at least one of the following criteria: Resided for at least 15 years between the years 1980 and 2010 in a census tract designated as an Opportunity Zone or Disproportionate…

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Source : Denver opens its first Social Equity Technical Assistance program for aspiring entrepreneurs in the cannabis industry

reposted by Cannabis News World

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