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Cortez council extends pot shop hours to 9 p.m.

Later hours geared toward tourism business
A pot plant at Medicine Man, a marijuana dispensary and retailer, in Denver. Cortez City Council members on Tuesday passed an ordinance permitting sales of marijuana from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Cortez City Council members on Tuesday unanimously passed on second and final reading an ordinance allowing marijuana sales in the city from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Mayor Karen Sheek was absent from the meeting. The ordinance includes both recreational and medical sales within those hours.

At a city council meeting May 24, Medicine Man CEO Sherry Garcia suggested the city consider extending the hours. Previously, pot shops were required to close at 7 p.m. Garcia said the two extra hours would help Medicine Man and other local businesses, especially during the summer as more tourists travel through Cortez.

Police Chief Roy Lane said he had no problems with extending the hours until 9 p.m.

Council designates buildings historic

Also Tuesday, the council approved historic designations for five buildings in Cortez. The properties are:

340 East Montezuma Ave., a historic home121 East Montezuma Ave., the Downey House44 East Main St., High Mesa Designs34 and 36 West Main St., The Farm Bistro210 East Main St. City HallAssistant City Planner Neva Connolly said all five properties have met the conditions in the city land-use code to be designated historic.

Councillors also approved a historic property survey for 24 properties on the south side of Main Street. The cost of the survey will be covered through a $13,602 grant from the Colorado Historical Society, which was awarded through that agency’s Certified Local Government Program to the Cortez Historic Preservation Board. Denver-based firm History Colorado will administer the survey.

Other council actions

Councillors approved a new hotel and restaurant liquor license for Taste of India restaurant, 1013 East Main St. Police Chief Lane circulated a poll of surrounding businesses and neighbors asking for opinions on the license. Fifty-nine people were in favor of granting the license, two were against granting it, and nine had no opinion, according to city documents.

The council also approved a bid from Albuquerque-based Postal Pros Inc. for mailing city utility bills. The bid is $.16 per bill mailed, said the city’s director of finance Kathi Moss.

Moss said her department sent requests for bids for utility mailing in hopes of attracting a local company. Pioneer Printing of Cortez submitted the only other bid, which was 62 percent higher than the bid from Postal Pros, she said. Moss could not justify awarding the higher bid, but she said the city should keep options open for a local utility billing contract in the future.

The council unanimously approved appointing Rebecca Levy to the city planning and zoning board. Levy also serves as executive director of the Cortez Cultural Center.

Council members also approved on second and final reading an ordinance revising the rules and qualifications for serving on city boards and commissions.

The ordinance states that a person wishing to serve on a city board or commission must undergo a criminal background check. Under the ordinance, prospective members could be disqualified for appointment if the background check reveals convictions within seven years for crimes of violence, moral turpitude, felony theft or embezzlement, as well as crimes against persons or government. Crimes against children are not subject to the seven-year statute of limitations, according to the ordinance.

The council also approved the purchase of a $14,051 rectifier system for the city’s electric power grid. The new system will replace the system that failed recently and left power customers out of service for several hours, General Services Director Rick Smith said. Power Products Power Services was awarded the bid.

Council members approved several licenses at the meeting, including:

A renewal tavern liquor license for Angels End Zone, 309 North BroadwayA renewal 3.2 percent beer retail liquor license for City Market, 508 E. Main St.A renewal hotel and restaurant liquor license for Once Upon A Sandwich, 7 W. Main St.A renewal brew pub liquor license for J Fargos, 1209 E. Main St.

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