COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Jaymen Johnson has been the owner of Speakeasy Vape Lounge on Bijou Street for over five years, but is now facing closure.
Jaymen says he’s losing business to cannabis clubs that do not have legal licenses like he does.
“Our average is less than $70 a day in revenue,” Jaymen said. “That’s not even enough to pay our rent.”
He is asking the City of Colorado Springs for better enforcement of cannabis clubs that operate illegally.
“The consumer doesn’t understand the difference between a licensed and unlicensed facility,” Jaymen said. “To them it’s all the same, and they just see it as, we offer less services than them.”
He was on the corner of Colorado and Nevada on Wednesday, asking for the public’s help to stay open.
“We hope that they have an appreciation that we are trying to work within the laws, that they see the need for the clubs in this town, and we hope they will step up and help us where the government has failed,” Jaymen said.
Sarah Johnson, Colorado Springs City Clerk, says when cannabis clubs get a legal license, they are agreeing to follow the terms listed in the ordinance.
“They cannot sell it, they cannot give it away, they cannot trade for remuneration, or anything along those lines,” Sarah said. “But you can take your own and go into these licensed clubs.”
Jaymen says some of his customers are buying illegally from other clubs, then coming to his club to consume it.
When FOX21 asked Sarah why illegal clubs are staying open, she said she could not comment, and that the city is currently in litigation for some clubs that did not apply for a license.