The final tally for Colorado marijuana sales is a staggering $996,184,7888 as December 2015 figures show a record-setting finish.
According to new date from the state Department of Revenue; licensed and regulated marijuana stores in Colorado sold $996,184,788 worth of recreational and medical marijuana in 2015.
Cannabis industry attorney Christian Sederberg said Tuesday upon hearing the 2015 totals “I think it’s ethical to round that up to a billion”.
The recreational marijuana sales in Colorado first started on Jan, 1, 2014.
The state also collected more than $135 million in marijuana taxes and fees in 2015; over $35 million of which is marked for school construction projects.
One of the principal drafters of Colorado’s pot-legalizing Amendment 64, attorney Steve Fox claims; “These are amazing numbers, especially on the tax revenue side.”
Colorado released December 2015 marijuana tax data, showing a major uptick in month-over-month sales. Recreational pot sales increased more than 21% from November to December, lading at $62.6 million – a monthly record in the state’s legal era. Medical sales also increased more than 32% in the same period, totaling $39.1 million.
The data on Colorado marijuana sales and taxes ended months of speculation surrounding the 2015 totals, which some believed would exceed $1 billion. Even though the sales amount didn’t reach that lofty mark, legalization advocates are still content with the 2015 totals.
Mason Tvert, the Marijuana Policy Project’s communications director said; “It’s remarkable than less than seven years ago, all of that money was being spent in the underground market”. “Clearly there’s a large demand for marijuana, and we’re now seeing that demand being met by legitimate businesses that are answering to authorities instead of criminals who answer to nobody.”
Colorado’s 2015 marijuana tax and sales totals tell a story of implementation and growth. While the state’s pot shops sold more than $699 million of cannabis in 2014, they sold more then $966 million in 2015 – a year when more pot shops opened, more municipalities started started allowing these businesses and customers to find their way into the regulated market. The totals for taxes and licenses grew from $76 million in 2014 to $135 million in 2015.
The school-funding 15% excise tax on wholesale marijuana transfers jumped from $13.3 million in 2014 to more then $35 million in 2015, according to the state.
“I’m really proud of our state and proud of our legislators and local officials, who have helped us transition away from an underground market so quickly,” said Sederberg, “so that our state can see the benefits of tax revenues, regulated sales, jobs and economic development.”
There are currently three types of state taxes on recreational marijuana; the standard 2.9% sales tax, a 10% special marijuana sales tax, and a 15% excise tax on wholesale marijuana transfers. For December, Colorado collected $11.3 million is recreational taxes and fees and almost $2 million in medical taxes and fees.