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Colorado Governor Requests $5M To Support Marijuana Entrepreneurs And Social Equity Businesses

Polis is attempting to fill the ‘significant gap in OEDIT’s ability to help’

Colorado’s governor is looking to further assist the marijuana industry and entrepreneurs from communities most impacted by the drug war through a proposed program to provide businesses a pool of resources that they are currently ineligible for.

The state’s Office of Economic Development & International Trade (OEDIT) is requesting a “one-time $5,000,000 infusion” of cash to fund the establishment of “a new cannabis advancement program, as well as workshops and business support staff for the program.”

The $5 million will partly go to employing two people in OEDIT who will oversee the launch of the program, which will be designed to mimic to roles of the federal Small Business Administration and state Small Business Development Center (SBDC).

Because marijuana remains federally illegal, cannabis companies have been broadly barred from accessing government grants, loans and services afforded to small businesses in other industries. The new budget proposal from Gov. Jared Polis (D) is an attempt to fill the “significant gap in OEDIT’s ability to help entrepreneurs in the industry,” and it’s intended to give people from communities most harmed by prohibition a leg up.

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