First month Colorado marijuana sales blaze into the millions

Dozens in Denver wait in line to buy marijuana

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — Colorado raked in about $2 million from taxes on recreational marijuana in January, the first month it was legal to sell non-medicinal pot in the state.

State officials say the numbers came in as expected.

On Jan. 1, Colorado became the first state to permit the sale of recreational marijuana to anyone age 21 or older. Cannabis purchases are limited to one ounce. It’s the first place in the world where marijuana will be regulated from seed to sale.

Colorado places a 15% excise tax, a 10% special sales tax and a 2.9% sales tax on recreational marijuana, in addition to application and license fees. It imposes just a 2.9% sales tax, as well as application on license fees, on medical marijuana, which was legalized by voters in Colorado in 2000.

When combined with taxes and fees from medicinal marijuana, the state brought in a total of $3.5 million in January from pot sales.

The state also taxes alcohol, which brought in about $5.1 million in taxes in December, the most recent data available from the Colorado Department of Revenue.

A big chunk of the funds collected from marijuana taxes will be funneled to programs aimed at keeping kids way from pot. The governor has requested funds for the prevention of youth marijuana, for treatment of substance use, regulatory oversight, and law enforcement and public safety.

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3 comments

  • Gerry

    !,032,500 in taxes the first month. So if it follows the same trend, over $12 million in taxes for the year. I wonder if all will be spent on the youth program. Or will they put the rest in the state coffers? What would we do in VA? I would prefer that the money just be funnled into the coffers and not an outreach program.

  • Kathryn Leighton

    I wonder why their parents gave them so much money just to buy pot. Maybe they thought it will drive them to get a job and move out of their basement.
    Wrooooong

    • Commonsense

      So you believe the age old lie that pot smokers are all living in their parents basement? I’m 53 years old and have been a white collar worker; business owner; and company vice president. I moved out of my parents house at 18 and never looked back! I smoke cannabis every night and it has only helped me and has caused me no harm. I wish ignorant folks like you would stop embarrassing yourselves and stay off these comment threads until you educate yourself a little bit! Btw, I’ve known numerous people whose lives were ruined because of cigarettes and alcohol. Still haven’t met anyone who has done the same amount of damage due to cannabis.

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