Commercial Marijuana is Good for the Economy

marijuana dollars

Colorado and Washington are just among the states who have voted for the legalization of marijuana. Contrary to what people believe that the legalization may lead to events of anarchy and possible chaos on streets, passing the measures for recreational and medicinal uses to a Schedule 1 drug as classified by the federal level have even brought positive aftermath to their economies.

Today, we can count 28 states including the District of Columbia as having legalized the drug for medical purposes. Additionally, since November 2016 eight states (Maine, Massachusetts, Colorado, Nevada, California Washington, Oregon, and Alaska) have legalized the sale of recreational marijuana. The aftermath yields in billions of tax revenues from the cultivation and sale of cannabis and cannabis-derived products.

The states have seen a major economic boon, and not the bust as many may have predicted, because of the legalization. The new measure has already delivered something inconceivable to the normal population but fiscally viable as expected when the states raked in over a billion dollars (or could even be more) in tax revenues combined. Legalizing pot could save up to $14 billion a year as predicted by the economists. And the figure could even be in a rising vertical as other products could be developed from the plant other than the strains.

In the state where cultivation of cannabis has been initiated, Colorado’s marijuana sales raked in a whooping $996 million in 2015. That figure was up 42% from the $699 million in legal marijuana sales registered in 2014. Of this $996 million, $587.8 million came from the sale of recreational substance including strains. That’s a huge jump in sales from two years prior, which of course, had zero revenues from this industry.

Colorado also wound up netting $135 million in tax and licensing revenue from the sale of marijuana. That figure could have not been possible if the cannabis plant legalization measure has not been passed.

Definitely, America’s economy could use some help from cannabis industry. The economic benefits of legalizing cannabis in federal level would be felt across the entire United States.

Citing the benefits the tax revenue  has conveyed in the state of Colorado, legalizing marijuana could benefit all levels of government.

But there is a still a plight of opposition for the majority of the U.S. Marijuana is being distributed illegally and has been campaigned with misinformation, regarding it as a harbinger for other illegal drugs.
However, if the fiscal estimate is to be considered, legalizing marijuana could have an average yearly trade $113 billion. This means that the states or even the federal level estimated could receive $45 billion in taxes, not to mention the costs associated with enforcing the current laws.

Well, we know Colorado’s take was outstanding, but how are the other already-legalized-and-selling-cannabis states doing?

There are two states that are hot on the Colorado trail and these are: Oregon and Washington.

Oregon cannabis revenue has exceeded expectations and is more than $50 million so far in 2016. The initial projection was $17 million per year, so that’s been blown completely out of the water…even the highest estimate by the Oregon State Legislative Revenue Office was $10 million lower than what the state has actually brought in. The real number is $54,506,832 as of November 30, 2016.

Washington state’s sales, meanwhile, appear to be about half of what Colorado’s were; they’ve sold more than $1 billion since they legalized recreational cannabis in 2014 – which is a sound fiscal aftermath after years of having marijuana banned in the state.

Why Marijuana is Good for the Economy?

1. $13.7 Billion Saved On Prohibition Enforcement Costs

The government would save an estimated $13.7 billion on prohibition enforcement costs and tax revenue by legalizing marijuana, according to a paper endorsed by 300 economists.

2. $500 Million In Tax Revenue For Washington State

It’s estimated that Washington’s legalization of marijuana could bring the state an additional $500 million in tax revenue, WPTV reports. Well, we just mentioned that the sales of marijuana have beaten the economist’s estimates. That number in tax revenue is probable.

3. Colorado brought in 1 Billion Dollars in sales since cannabis legalization

Colorado’s pot legalization legislation, Amendment 64, is estimated to create $60 million for the state in combined savings and additional tax revenue, Colorado Springs Business Journal reports. But recently, it brought in hundreds of millions of dollars for tax revenue from the 1 billion dollars in sales.

4. Legalization Could Reduce Prices for Marijuana

Marijuana users could see substantial savings due to marijuana legalization, as prices could fall by up to 100 times, perhaps freeing up some cash to spend on other things.

5. Huge Prison Cost Savings

Inmates incarcerated on marijuana-related charges cost U.S. prisons $1 billion annually, according to a 2007 study, AlterNet reports.

6. Marijuana Prohibition Costs Taxpayers $41.8 Billion A Year

Including lost tax revenues, a 2007 study found that enforcing the marijuana prohibition costs tax payers $41.8 billion annually, Forbes reports.

7. Illegal Marijuana is a $36 Billion A Year Industry

It’s estimated that illegal marijuana is a $36 billion industry in the U.S. as MadameNoire reported. But if marijuana is legalized in the nationwide level, that number could even be dwarfed.

8. Dispensary Ads Boost Newspapers’ Revenue

The Sacramento News and Review saw a big boost in ad revenue when it offered advertising space for more than 60 medical marijuana dispensaries, enabling the publication to hire three additional employees, according to News 10.
Ganjly could also benefit from the ad revenues as we also want to be sustainable in our advocacy for cannabis.

9.  Legal Marijuana Could Be a $100 Billion Industry

Economist Stephen Easton estimated in 2010 that legal marijuana could be a $45 to $100 billion industry, Bloomberg Businessweek reports.
But that estimates may be seen as cumulative when we take regards the point five years from the time cannabis industry has been legalized in a state. Considering the 50 states that may have more dispensaries and with each state posting $2 to $3 billion dollar in annual sales, that figure can attained in just a year.

10. Creation of More Jobs

Cultivation of cannabis could open up opportunities to Native Americans and will help in opening up stores that would bring additional jobs for thousands of people.  And let’s not also forget the job openings of dispensaries once more of these shops open in various cities and states.