If Michigan voters elect to legalize marijuana in November, the state can expect to collect hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenue over the next five years, according to a new report from the non-partisan Michigan Senate Fiscal Agency.
In fact, the new estimates are even higher than those projected by the group sponsoring the legalization ballot measure.
While that group, Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol In Michigan, predicted that the state would collect about $520 million in cannabis sales and excise tax revenue in the five years after implementation, the government estimate is closer to $730 million over the same time span.
Via Michigan Senate Fiscal Agency.
The initiative, Proposition 1, would impose a 10 percent excise tax on non-medical cannabis sales in addition to the state’s six percent sales tax. It would also eliminate a three percent tax on medical cannabis “provisioning centers,” which was accounted for in the fiscal report.
Where would all that money go?
The 10 percent excise tax revenue would be distributed for transportation infrastructure (35 percent), schools (35 percent) and local jurisdictions that permit adult-use marijuana businesses to operate in their municipalities and counties (15 percent each).
Based on the government report, that means that by the 2022-23 fiscal year, out of of $252 million in total marijuana tax revenue, about $126 million will go toward road construction and K-12 education funds on an annual basis from the excise tax alone. On top of that, schools would receive an additional $77 million a year due to marijuana commerce, allocated from the state’s six percent sales tax.
Then, of course, there’s the cost savings of simply ending marijuana arrests and related prosecutions and incarcerations, as the Michigan Senate Fiscal Agency noted. The proposition “could have a positive fiscal impact on State and local government,” according to the report.
“Fewer felony arrests and convictions could decrease resource demands on court systems, community supervision, jails, and correctional facilities. In 2016, 199 people were sentenced to prison for a marijuana-related felony conviction, and 3,620 were sentenced to jail, probation, or a combination of both.”
The chances that Michigan ends up legalizing marijuana for adult-use seem fairly strong. A September 2018 poll from The Detroit News and WDIV-TV found that 56 percent of likely Michigan voters favor fully legalizing cannabis, compared to just 38 percent who said the opposed ending prohibition.
See the original article published on Marijuana Moment below:
Michigan Officials: Legal Marijuana Will Create Even More Revenue Than Activists Predicted
The call for legalized cannabis nationwide has been heard for some time, and the numbers, facts and figures revealed in recent years are making it even tougher for naysayers to effectively argue against it.
The benefits of making cannabis a legal, taxable substance are abundant. With states like Washington, Colorado and Alaska decriminalizing it entirely and reaping a variety of financial and economic benefits as a result, it is time for the rest of the nation, including those who do not personally engage, to reconsider America’s stance on marijuana.
Below are no-nonsense reasons why legalizing cannabis makes sense for everyone.
Slash Drug Cartel Revenue and Power
With a quarter of the population freely admitting to having used marijuana at some point and the federal government reporting that about 15 million Americans engage at least once per month, there is zero indication of an industry slowdown anytime soon.
Until recently, much of the supply of marijuana in the U.S. had entered through networks run by Mexican drug cartels, and the cartels were raking in numbers like $64 billion a year in untaxed income. Legalizing marijuana reduces the power of the cartels, lowers associated crime and gives the government a considerable stream of revenue to use toward any number of necessary expenditures.
Create Numerous New Jobs and Career Opportunities
States that have already seen marijuana legalized are reaping the benefits in the form of an array of new jobs and career paths for residents. Beyond staffing dispensaries, the industry requires growers, budtenders and administrative and clerical business professionals in order to run efficiently.
Start-up companies offering everything from apps that help users find legal cannabis dispensaries to marijuana-tourism excursions are cashing in, and others are starting to recognize industrial hemp for additional uses like making paper, oil and plastic.
Economy and Public Health
Despite legalization in some states, the marijuana industry operates largely as a cash-only business. Because it is still illegal federally, banks and credit card companies are generally unwilling to assist cannabis businesses, making taxable revenue difficult to track. Even with the industry dealing mostly in cash, legalized states like Colorado are reporting huge tax revenues from legal sales. Other states could reap the same benefits.
Legalizing and closely regulating the industry would eliminate this problem and would also help offset U.S. prison costs by minimizing the number of Americans incarcerated for drug offenses.
Discover Additional Medicinal Benefits
If marijuana were to be legalized nationwide, more of the plant’s medical benefits could be fully explored without fear of legal repercussion. Some prescription drugs containing cannabis have already been approved in countries like Canada, Sweden and Denmark.
If the U.S. were to follow suit, any number of additional medicinal benefits could be uncovered, giving much-needed to relief to millions of suffering Americans.
The cry for legalized, decriminalized marijuana is becoming increasingly more difficult to ignore as civic leaders, economists and politicians continue to tout its many benefits.
If decriminalized federally, each state could follow in the government’s footsteps and ultimately reduce crime, create new job opportunities, raise much-needed revenue and uncover countless new medical benefits for its citizens.
Recently, Information Is Beautiful went digging for information regarding the world’s most lucrative cash crops. Most people know that marijuana is gaining stake in the US economy and there is little chance that things will change any time soon.
Domestic marijuana prices may actually be on the decline as domestic production ramps up, but the cost of a high-quality ounce of weed is still over $300 per ounce. Concentrates are often priced at over $60 per gram which would make them more valuable per ounce than gold. This graph shows how the extremely profitable cannabis plant compares other common crops in the amount of revenue they can generate per square kilometer.
Colorado was the first state in the US to legalize recreational consumption of cannabis. We’re just starting to get the full picture of how much impact the plant can have on state tax revenues and other states are opening up shop. This graphic illustrates how cannabis stacks up next to other heavily taxed commodities in the state of Colorado.
Many schools in Colorado desperately need to hire more health care employees, such as counselors, social workers, and nurses, and thanks to the marijuana using residents and tourists in the state, some schools will be able to do just that.
The Colorado Department of Education awarded $975,658 to eleven different schools, yesterday, to be allocated to hiring these much needed health care employees. A total of twelve grant applications were submitted throughout the month they were being accepted, and eleven of those grants were awarded. The gifting of cannabis-tax grant money will not end with this round of approvals, however, because a second round of applications were being accepted until last week. The second round window closed after receiving sixteen submissions.
To address any worries that all of the funding may not be awarded, coordinator for the School Health Professional grant, Lynn Jenkins-Nygren told the Denver Post,
“We’re confident we will get very close to using the funds. The second round has a lot of larger districts.”
The first round of selected schools are listed below with the amount of money that was awarded.
The New America School, $169,232
HOPE Online Learning Academy, $131,900
Cripple Creek School District, $108,024
St.Vrain Valley School District, $96,650
Atlas Preparatory School, $89,200
Center Consolidated Schools 26JT, $87,062
Archuleta School District No. 50 JT, $65,790
Mountain Valley School District RE-1, $64,000
South Routt School District RE-3, $60,360
GOAL Academy, $53,440
Alamosa School District, $50,000
photo credit: globalfinance