Tax Revenue Expected To Reach $125 Million As 2015 Colorado Cannabis Sales Near $1B

That’s a major increase from 2014, when legal marijuana sales hit $700 million, earning $44 million in tax money for the state.
By | Follow on Facebook | @KitOConnell |
Be Sociable, Share!
    • Google+

    DENVER, Colorado — Colorado’s legal marijuana business boomed last year, with total sales in the state nearing the $1 billion mark, according to current estimates.

    Official figures for marijuana sales in December won’t be available until next month, but Ricardo Baca, a staff writer for The Denver Post’s The Cannabist, reported on Jan. 13 that total marijuana sales, including for both recreational and medicinal purposes, had reached $895 million by November.

    With cannabis taxed in three ways by the state, including two different kinds of sales tax, Colorado had earned $121 million through that month. That figure represents an especially important windfall for education, Baca noted:

    “Perhaps the most-watched figure in the state’s marijuana tax data is the 15 percent excise tax, which is earmarked for school construction projects. In November that tax brought in more than $3 million, up from $2.6 million in October. So far in 2015, those school-bound tax revenues have topped $31.4 million — besting that tax’s 2014 totals of $13.3 million.”

    In September, The Guardian reported that tax revenues were expected to reach $125 million, a figure almost double the $44 million earned in 2014. That means taxes on legal marijuana are more profitable for Colorado than taxes on alcohol sales, according to Time magazine:

    “Colorado collected almost $70 million in marijuana taxes during [the fiscal year that ended in June], nearly double the $42 million collected from alcohol taxes.”

    By comparison, legal marijuana sales reached just $700 million in 2014. Given the intense growth, some sources had forecast a total of $1 billion in marijuana sales for 2015. However, Baca estimated last week that the final figures might fall a bit short, thanks in part to a small downturn during October:

    “While we expect an upturn in cannabis sales from November to December 2015 — perhaps somewhat mirroring the month-to-month increase we witnessed in December 2014, when medical pot sales jumped 15 percent and recreational marijuana sales skipped up 12 percent — we don’t expect the 30 percent month-over-month spike that would be required for the 2015 totals to top $1 billion.”

    Johnny Green, a writer for The Weed Blog, speculated on Jan. 14 that growth in the Centennial State may slow as other states move to legalize cannabis:

    “It will be interesting to see how Colorado’s industry numbers are once Oregon’s recreational marijuana industry is fully up and running, which is expected to be by the end of 2016. October sales in Colorado took a dip, which is also when limited recreational sales started in Oregon.”

    Green emphasized the importance of cannabis sales for Colorado’s economy, whatever the final total:

    “December would have to have a significant uptick in sales in order to cross the one billion dollar mark, but even if that doesn’t happen, Colorado’s marijuana industry had a stellar year. Can you name one state in the country that couldn’t use a billion dollar industry that largely came out of nowhere?”

    Be Sociable, Share!


    Print This Story Print This Story
    You Might Also Like  
    This entry was posted in Front Page: National, Health & Lifestyle, Inside Stories, National, Top Stories and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.
    • Many of us have been waiting for legalization nationwide! It will definitely bring lots of tax revenues.

    • Pingback: Tax Revenue Expected To Reach $125 Million As 2015 Colorado Cannabis Sales Near $1B - Big Bear Cannabis()

    • Pingback: TAX LAW IN COLORADO | Whole Sale Ken Craft Solutions()

    • Bill Griggs

      So thats $125 million in various sales taxes on approaching $900 million in product sold. I wonder how much was paid in income taxes by these companies and employees? It’s probably a fair amount in state taxes and a good bit more in federal taxes that wouldn’t have been paid by illicit suppliers.

    • mrpuma2u

      Drug prohibition = incarceration and high cost
      Legalization = big tax revenues

    • larry

      Kansas is so jealous!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Pingback: Tax Revenue Expected To Reach $125 Million As 2015 Colorado Cannabis Sales Near $1B | Weed News Global()

    • Brian Kelly

      Awesome Article!

      Thanks for publishing this !

      Legalize Nationwide!

      The “War on Marijuana” has been a complete and utter failure. It is the largest component of the broader yet equally unsuccessful “War on Drugs” that has cost our country over a trillion dollars.

      Instead of The United States wasting Billions upon Billions more of our tax dollars fighting a never ending “War on Marijuana”, lets generate Billions of dollars, and improve the deficit instead. It’s a no brainer.

      The Prohibition of Marijuana has also ruined the lives of many of our loved ones. In numbers greater than any other nation, our loved ones are being sent to jail and are being given permanent criminal records which ruin their chances of employment for the rest of their lives, and for what reason?

      Marijuana is much safer to consume than alcohol. Yet do we lock people up for choosing to drink?

      Even The President of the United States has used marijuana. Has it hurt his chances at succeeding in life? If he had gotten caught by the police during his college years, he may have very well still been in prison today! Beyond that, he would then be fortunate to even be able to find a minimum wage job that would consider hiring him with a permanent criminal record. Let’s end this hypocrisy now!

      The government should never attempt to legislate morality by creating victim-less marijuana “crimes” because it simply does not work and costs the taxpayers a fortune.

      Marijuana Legalization Nationwide is an inevitable reality that’s approaching much sooner than prohibitionists think and there is nothing they can do to stop it!

      Legalize Nationwide! Support Each and Every Marijuana Legalization Initiative!

      • Brian Kelly

        In the prohibitionist’s world, anybody who consumes the slightest amount of marijuana responsibly in the privacy of their own homes are “stoners” and “dopers” that need to be incarcerated in order to to protect society.

        In their world, any marijuana use equates to marijuana abuse, and it is their God given duty to worry about “saving us all” from the “evils” of marijuana use.

        Who are they to tell us we can’t choose marijuana, the safer choice instead of alcohol for relaxation, after a long, hard day, in the privacy of our own homes?

        People who consume marijuana are smart, honest, hard working, educated, and successful people too, who “follow the law” also.(except for their marijuana consumption under it’s current prohibition of course) .

        Not the stereotypical live at home losers prohibitionists make them out to be. They are doctors, lawyers, professors, movie stars, and politicians too.

        Several Presidents of The United States themselves, along with Justin Trudeau, Bill Gates, and Carl Sagan have all confessed to their marijuana use. As have a long and extensive list of successful people throughout history at one point or other in their lives.

        Although that doesn’t mean a dam thing to people who will make comments like “dopers” and “stoners” about anybody who uses the slightest amount of Marijuana although it is way safer than alcohol.

        To these people any use equals abuse, and that is really ignorant and full of hypocrisy. While our society promotes, advertises, and even glorifies alcohol consumption like it’s an All American pastime.

        There is nothing worse about relaxing with a little marijuana after a long hard day than having a drink or two of alcohol.

        So come off those high horses of yours. Who are you to dictate to the rest of society that we can’t enjoy Marijuana, the safer choice over alcohol, in the privacy of our own homes?

        We’ve worked real hard our whole lives to provide for our loved ones. We don’t appreciate prohibitionists trying to impose their will and morals upon us all.

        Has a marijuana consumer ever forced you to use it? Probably not. So nobody has the right to force anybody not to either.

        Don’t try to impose your morality and “clean living” upon everybody else with Draconian Marijuana Laws, and we won’t think you’re such prohibitionist hypocrites.

        Legalize Nationwide! Support Each and Every Marijuana Legalization Initiative!

        • Brian Kelly

          “Smoking marijuana is 114 times safer than drinking alcohol”

          “Marijuana may be even safer than previously thought, researchers say”

          “Marijuana may be even safer than previously thought, researchers say New study: We should stop fighting marijuana legalization and focus on alcohol and tobacco instead By Christopher Ingraham February 23

          Compared with other recreational drugs — including alcohol — marijuana may be even safer than previously thought. And researchers may be systematically underestimating risks associated with alcohol use.

          Those are the top-line findings of recent research published in the journal Scientific Reports, a subsidiary of Nature. Researchers sought to quantify the risk of death associated with the use of a variety of commonly used substances. They found that at the level of individual use, alcohol was the deadliest substance, followed by heroin and cocaine.”

          “The report discovered that marijuana is 114 times less deadly than alcohol. Researchers were able to determine this by comparing the lethal doses with the amount of typical use. Through this approach, marijuana had the lowest mortality risk to users out of all the drugs they studied. In fact—because the numbers were crossed with typical daily use—marijuana is the only drug that tested as “low risk.”