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Thursday, February 2, 2023

As Pennsylvania lags behind in legalizing marijuana, New York brags

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(Center Square) — While Pennsylvania debates legalizing marijuana, neighboring states like New York are bragging about their tax revenue.

New York legalized medical cannabis in 2014 and recreational use for adults 21 or older followed in 2021. Legal sales began in end of 2022So far, tax revenue from licenses alone has been notable.

Office of Hemp Administration, at Inaugural annual reportAnd Cannabis tax revenue, application fees and licensing fees disclosed a total of nearly $16 million in the 2021-22 fiscal year.

However, the vast majority of that came from the medical cannabis program, with just under $1 million in cannabis and adult use cannabis.

By the end of September 2022, revenue is $7.5 million.

Nearly 4,000 medical practitioners can prescribe medical cannabis, with more than 124,000 New Yorkers registered for medical cannabis. Adult use licensing lagged behind older medical software. The Cannabis Control Board has approved more than 300 licenses for growers and processors, and only provisionally approved 36 licenses for retail dispensaries — even though it has received more than 900 applications.

With the cannabis industry on the rise, tax revenue from legal sales could run into the billions. New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer estimated that sales in the adult use market would be generated $3.1 billion in revenue statewide and $1.1 billion in New York City alone.

“Conservatively, this market could generate annual tax revenues totaling $1.3 billion at the state and city levels,” Stringer wrote.

State forecasts from January 2022 expect $1.25 billion in tax revenue over the next six years. Colorado, which legalized recreational marijuana in 2014, has gathered $1.8 billion in government tax revenue And another $238 million in local sales tax since ratification.

“At the heart of all of this work is our focus on equity and inclusivity,” Tremaine Wright, chair of the Cannabis Control Council, wrote in the report. “The market we are building will support equity seekers to ensure they are not only ready to open a business, but also well positioned for the kind of long-term success that builds generational wealth.”

Tax revenue collected in New York will be from recreational use sales Three custom modes: 40% to the State Lottery Fund for educational purposes; 40% for the Community Grants Reinvestment Fund (directed to nonprofit and local governments by the State Cannabis Advisory Council); and 20% for the drug treatment and public education fund.

Medical cannabis tax revenue flows into five different funds. About 90% goes to the New York State and Local Governments Cannabis Revenue Fund.

This medical marijuana program in Pennsylvania was created in 2016 and has several accredited residents – more than a million — but lawmakers have taken a cautious approach to recreational use.

Although some estimates have pegged annual tax revenue up to $6 billion If the Commonwealth adopts legalization, a federal law that prohibits users from qualifying for a concealed carry license could violate Second Amendment rights.

Maryland, New Jersey, and New York He embraced rationing, which could also lower tax revenue if Pennsylvanians choose to cross state lines to legally purchase marijuana. a last minute effort of state Republicans in December to encourage retiring Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pennsylvania, to reform a failed federal cannabis law. Until federal law changes, legalization efforts may remain stalled in Pennsylvania, despite some bipartisan support.

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