Seen from the Legal Marijuana Markets
It is amazing how much revenue legal marijuana markets can bring into an economy. With Colorado being a pioneer state in marijuana legalization for recreational purposes, they are the first state that we have seen a combination of medical and recreational sales and revenue from. It is on their economics and their numbers that many other states look to for expectations and for making projections. Legal marijuana sales in Colorado began in January of 2014. Since then the revenue from medical marijuana sales has always surpassed the revenue from recreational sales. That was until August of this year. This is when recreational sales surpassed that of medical marijuana sales for the first time within the state.
Colorado in the Beginning
In the very first month of recreational sales within the state of Colorado the total revenue of recreational and medical sales were $46.9 million. The recreational marijuana sales that month were $14.7 million and medical marijuana sales were $32.2 million. The first year totals came in at $385.9 million in medical sales and $313.2 million in recreational sales for a total of almost $700 million in total sales for 2014. Colorado has a standard 2.9% sales tax on marijuana sales. They also have a 10% special marijuana tax and a 15% excise tax that is marked for school construction projects. In 2014, the state brought in a total of $76.2 million in taxes from legal marijuana sales. This is incredible, and many states have been lusting at those numbers and hoping to follow in their footsteps since.
Breaking Records Every Month
If you think that is incredible wait until you hear how much the sales were in August of 2015 alone. This year in August the sales of medical and recreational marijuana within the legal industries in Colorado were over a hundred million dollars in just this one month. Oregon is the most recent state to allow recreational marijuana sales. In their first week alone they saw 11 million dollars’ worth of recreational marijuana sales. That is just a couple million shy of the recreational sales seen in the entire first month of sales in Colorado! If Oregon continues the projected path, you can only expect to them making record-breaking sales in the months to come.
The Tax Dollars Helping Our Communities and Schools
In 2014, the state of Colorado had almost $700 million in marijuana sales. On $700 million worth of sales, they made $76.2 million in taxes. From January until August of this year they have made almost $87 million in taxes. This means that only eight months into the year, they already surpassed the total amount of sales for all of last year. In August alone the state brought in $3.3 million for school construction projects from the 15%excise tax on legal marijuana sales. That is an incredible amount of money being put into the state’s educational system. Just imagine how much could be done with over three million dollars a month in your local education system.
Economic Gain is Undeniably Amazing
We can only expect to see great economical gains to local economies wherever cannabis is legal. Colorado has been breaking records every month since the beginning of the year and projections only see this trend continuing. So when someone says nothing good can come from legalization, let them in on just how much money is being brought into the states. It’s exciting to think about how much good can come to a community when they see such an influx of funds in their budgets.
Blocking the Money from the Black Market
What is even more exciting though is the amount of money that is not going in to the black market. Marijuana legalization is cutting of millions if not billions of dollars every year from going to drug cartels and black-market terrorist cells. Cutting off money to these organizations will eventually remove them from operating within the United States. Not only is legal marijuana preventing this cash flow from reaching the hands of these individuals it is also protecting cannabis, consumers. A legal marijuana market means that individuals that consume marijuana whether it is medically or recreationally can obtain it in a safe environment. This helps to cut down on crime and the risks of shady drug transactions.
It Shouldn’t Even Be a Question
With these types of numbers and looking at how much the revenue can help you can only expect to see more states follow in their paths in the years to come. It shouldn’t even be a question. Marijuana is a medicine and it saves lives. It does not harm those that choose to use it recreationally and it is much safer than other recreational stimulants such as alcohol. It should be legalized nationwide.