The results are in, and they do not lie: If the United States were to legalize the sale of recreational marijuana throughout the country, the tax revenue that would accrue is absolutely mind blowing. The legalization of marijuana would not only benefit current users but the country as a whole, helping to pave the long road toward national debt recovery by creating a new source of massive revenue. Community Tax has crunched the numbers and the facts we uncovered are just staggering.
While four states have seen the actual revenue recreational marijuana is able to pull in, others are left to projections and the results? Electrifying. California alone is at the top of the rankings with a projected $519.3 million possible in tax revenue. Eight other states including New York and Texas are over the hundred million dollar mark in projected revenue. The lowest projected revenue by state was predicted to be $4.5 million in Wyoming — definitely not pocket change.
The impact of legalizing marijuana is both definite and immediate. Between 2014 and 2015 Washington, Oregon and Colorado have gone legal and we took a look at the tax revenue gained in just the first month of sales alone. The first state to go legal, Colorado made a whopping $2.9 million in their first month with Washington not far behind collecting 1 million. Oregon gained $3.48 million in just their first month of sales after hoping on board the legal bandwagon and all of these states are putting their green to great uses.
The tax money earned by marijuana gets doled out according to the needs and wants of each individual state, as federal government still considers marijuana to be an illegal substance the states themselves have the power.
Colorado chooses to vote on how they spend their money; this past year $66.1 million was put into causes like school grants, education and substance abuse programs. Washington and Oregon both have set percentages for their earned money to funnel into certain programs and funds. Alaska, the newest state to go legal, has yet to determine how to spend their money but as with the other legal states, the cash will without a doubt go to making Alaska a better place to live.
Leaving America’s top crops corn, oil crops and wheat in the dust, recreational marijuana is unparalleled to any other cash crop. If the United States were to go legal as a whole the projected yearly revenue stands at $3.1 billion.
Take a look for yourself at the stunning numbers we have rounded up for you in the infographic below: