March 21, 2011

Colorado House to Vote on THC/DUI Bill

March 21, 2011
Colorado flag leaf

HB1261: Full House to Vote on THC/DUI Bill (Tues., 3/22)

HB1261, the Colorado THC/DUI bill, will be debated and voted on by the full Colorado House of Representatives for the first time on Tuesday morning, March 22. This is known as the bill’s Second Reading, and more amendments are possible.

HB1261 would declare that anyone found driving with 5 nanogram/milliliters or more of THC in their bloodstream would be guilty of “DUI per se” and subject to a misdemeanor offense and the possible revocation of their driver’s license.

The bill passed out of the House Appropriations Committee on Friday (3/18). The committee allocated $22,000 to the Department of Revenue to hire programmers to update their database to collect the new THC/DUI data in the Driver License System.

Read the bill and committee reports here:

You listen online to the full House of Representatives debate. Reps. also read their email while they are debating this issue, so you can have a real-time impact on the debate. See list of emails below:

It is VITALLY IMPORTANT that you write RESPECTFUL emails and make phone calls telling your Representative that the DUI/THC bill is unfounded and unnecessary and may cause medical marijuana patients to become a targets for DUI arrests.

Talking Points
– HB1261 is unfair to medical marijuana patients and will force patients back on prescription medications that do not have nanogram levels and are not routinely tested for by the police.
– HB1261 will require a “forced blood draw”, forcing anyone suspected of driving under the influence of THC to submit to a blood draw forced by the state. Currently, alcohol levels can be tested through urine, breath or
blood. But under the THC/DUI bill, the nanogram count can only come from a forced blood draw.
– The sponsor of HB1261, Rep. Claire Levy (D-Boulder) admits that she cannot point to one single accident caused solely by marijuana and that the research on setting a nanogram limit as evidence of impairment is “all over the place.”
– Contrary to other reports, the “per se” part of the bill has *not* been removed. This means that a person charged with THC/DUI can still introduce evidence that their blood level was below the “per se” number, but cannot introduce evidence that, in spite of the number, they were not impaired.
Ask your Representative to remove the “per se” standard from the bill and allow patients to present behavioral evidence that they were not impaired.
– Ask your Representative to include an exemption for medical marijuana patients.

Contact Your State Representatives
The Colorado Coalition for Patients and Caregivers has compiled the 2011 list of Colorado Senators and Representatives as both a Printable PDF and Excel Spreadsheet. These spreadsheets also includes the votes the Reps. had last year on the two anti-patient bills of the 2010 session (HB1284 and

Click here to download these files:

Email Colorado State Representatives
If you want to email your letter to all the Colorado State House Representatives, here is a list that you can cut and paste into the BCC (Blind Carbon Copy) field of your email program:,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

Please send CTI any emails you send or responses you receive back.


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