On November 6, 2012, the Colorado Amendment 64 was passed by voters in Colorado, followed by legalization of cannabis in January 2014. Colorado and Washington became the very first U.S. states to permit marijuana use to all adults aged 21 and over. Since this time, recreational and medical cannabis sales have contributed to the economy in ways unimaginable.
Weed-friendly Colorado Employs Most of its Residents
Nowadays, Colorado is seen as a very weed-friendly state where medical marijuana patients can easily obtain their medication and recreational users can enjoy cannabis without legal repercussion..
Boasting the nation’s lowest unemployment rate, “The Centennial State” has the highest average elevation of any other state. The state’s unemployment rate is just 2.3 percent and since there are such a wide range of opportunities for workers who are interested in the medical marijuana market, is there any wonder why?
Although recreational cannabis has helped Colorado’s economy in many ways, it is medical marijuana that is really making a difference to the western U.S. state.
How, you ask? Read on to find out.
Colorado is Investing its Taxes Wisely
Since medical marijuana was legalized in Colorado, the state has managed to stack up millions of dollars in taxes. In 2016, the state pulled in $198.5 million in tax revenue from in-state cannabis sales totaling $1.3 billion. The money is being used very wisely, with a big chunk going towards infrastructure and public schools. Members of the public are also being taught about substance abuse – an incredibly effective tactic that is making people think differently about cannabis and how legalization is so beneficial. The majority of the tax money earned from medical marijuana sales (as well as recreational marijuana sales) is being funneled into youth education programs, school development, and drug and prevention treatment programs. This, in turn, is helping to regulate Colorado’s medical cannabis industry.
Colorado’s Medical Marijuana Industry has Created Thousand of New Jobs
Unemployment is rarely a problem for Colorado’s residents, with thousands of new jobs being created as a result of cannabis legalization. Many of those jobs are in the recreational cannabis field, as well as the medical cannabis field. Examples of the job roles that are strengthening the economy include cannabis lab testers, budtenders, cultivators, strain breeders, researchers and product developers. There are even colleges and universities opening their doors to people who want to get involved in such an exciting industry.
Demand for Commercial Real Estate is on the Rise
Medical cannabis is being cultivated throughout Colorado, most of which is to supply the state’s medical cannabis industry and some that is being exported to other countries. With such high demand for cannabis cultivation, farmers are searching for plots of land where they can build greenhouse growing facilities. Real estate is heating up, thus attracting investors and strengthening the economy.
Colorado is Becoming an Epicenter for Marijuana Research
Research and development (R&D) are incredibly important for the medical cannabis industry to thrive. Countries like Israel are known for being leaders in R&D and it seems that Colorado is quickly catching up. Money made from the medical marijuana industry is opening new doors for scientific research that could potentially help us to discover brand new cannabinoids and their healing properties.
State Savings from Reduced Crime
Less black market activity means fewer dodgy deals taking place on the streets and far fewer arrests taking place. The medical cannabis industry is helping the state to save money that would otherwise be spent sentencing criminals for possession of cannabis. In fact, Colorado could save $12-40 million in a year by reducing the number of arrests for medical marijuana possession. The state is on track to save even more as the years progress, thanks to advancements in medical cannabis research.
California is Following in Colorado’s Footsteps
The people of California stand to benefit greatly from the legalization of medical marijuana, of which can be purchased at an SF dispensary. More than 1.53 million Californians were registered medical marijuana patients just last year. As this figure increases, so does the strength of the economy.
By the end of 2018, the cannabis market in California is projected to hit $3.7 billion. This is thanks in large part to the legalization of medical cannabis, which occurred on January 1. However, medical marijuana plays a big role in bulking up the economy of “The Golden State,” where the initial proposition to legalize medical marijuana took place as far back as 1996.
Medical marijuana has enabled people to escape the black market and train in the burgeoning cannabis industry, where jobs range from budtenders to laboratory analysts and strain developers. As more and more states are moving towards decriminalization and legalization of cannabis, it might be wise for lawmakers to look to the state of colorado, and the progressive prosperity that has resulted from legalization.
Was this article helpful and informative? Leave us a comment with your thoughts in the section below.