Victory for Elbert County Hemp Farmers


In 2020, McAllister Garfield attorneys successfully defended hemp farmers in Elbert County Colorado from an overly burdensome hemp regulation that would have charged thousands of dollars in fees for county hemp cultivation permits, putting dozens of small hemp farms out of business.

Late last year Elbert County, Colorado announced a proposed hemp ordinance which imposed thousands of dollars of hemp permit fees on hemp cultivation operations in the county. A hemp farm in the County engaged McAllister Garfield to challenge the proposed ordinance. After a rowdy stakeholder meeting in November 2019 with farmers, county officials, and law enforcement, Elbert County doubled down on its fee structure in a revised proposed ordinance.

McAllister Garfield attorney David Wunderlich testified at county meetings on behalf of the firm’s hemp farm client. The firm also sent written arguments to Elbert County about the illegality of the proposed ordinance. McAllister Garfield’s efforts, with great support and moving testimony from the Elbert County hemp farming community, convinced Elbert County to relent. In January 2020, Elbert County adopted a hemp ordinance which charged no fees to hemp cultivations in the county.

The winning argument was based on the fact that hemp cultivation is declared as a matter of statewide concern under Colorado statute. This means that the Colorado legislature determined that the matter was important enough that only the state of Colorado, and not local governments, can regulate the licensing of hemp cultivations.

McAllister Garfield attorneys have successfully defended the marijuana and hemp industries from local government overreach since the very beginnings of Colorado’s legal cannabis marketplace. Contact McAllister Garfield today to discuss your matter with a lawyer.


David Wunderlich