Amendment 44: Update On Funding

In a about a month, voters in Colorado will ultimately decide whether or not they want marijuana possession to be legal for adults, by voting for or against Amendment 44.

But one of the few local groups to actively campaign against the measure has received over half of its money from individuals connected to the federal government current financial records show. And more than 20% of contributions come from out of state. Guarding Our Children Against Marijuana (GOCAM), a group created to oppose Amendment 44, has received $3,140, or approximately 54% of its funding, from two members of the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (RMHIDTA).

The RMHIDTA is not a government agency, but an entity funded by the federal government’s Office For National Drug Control Policy. The mission statement is “to support the national drug control strategy of reducing drug use in this nation.”

“It’s a four state program that gives federal funds to bring people together to work together in drug enforcement, training, and information sharing,” said Thomas Gorman, the group’s director and a retired narcotics officer. “We’re not specifically an agency, the money comes out of the Office For National Drug Control Policy.”

Gorman himself gave $3,090 to GOCAM, the largest amount any individual contributor has donated so far. Lori Strain, a reported staffer with the RMHIDTA, also gave $50.00.

An additional 21% of GOCAM’s money also came from outside of Colorado, most notably with the Florida-based Save Our Society From Drugs, which has given a total of $1,023.38.

Currently, GOCAM as raised $5,748.38, since last April, and has spent a total of $4,157.98.

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About the Author

Erin Rosa

Erin Rosa was born in Spain and raised in Colorado Springs. She is a freelance writer currently living in Denver. Rosa's work has been featured in a variety of news outlets including the Huffington Post, Democracy Now!, and the Rocky Mountain Chronicle, an alternative-weekly in Northern Colorado where she worked as a columnist covering the state legislature.

Rosa has received awards from the Society of Professional Journalists for her reporting on lobbying and woman's health issues. She was also tapped with a rare honorable mention award by the Newspaper Guild-CWA's David S. Barr Award in 2008--only the second such honor conferred in its nine-year history--for her investigative series covering the federal government's Supermax prison in the state.

Rosa covers the labor community, corrections, immigration and government transparency matters.

She can be reached at erosa@coloradoindependent.com.

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