In 2017, the states of California, Colorado, and Washington posted marijuana sales totals of $2.75 billion, $1.56 billion and $1 billion, respectively.
Most of these sales came from recreational marijuana that was available without medical prescriptions through specialty establishments, such as cannabis boutiques and dispensaries as well as establishments like marijuana hotels.
Needless to say, these three states have successfully demonstrated just how legalized cannabis can contribute towards a powerful economy. That fact has now sparked a discussion about legalizing marijuana and related activities such as 420 friendly hotels in other popular states as well.
Earlier this year, New York City Comptroller Ben Stringer mentioned that New York City and New York state could benefit from exceptional revenue streams if marijuana was legalized within state jurisdictions. He shared these thoughts while speaking to CNBC.
According to Stringer’s estimations, out of the total 15.1 million adults living in New York, around 1.5 million are marijuana users. He further stated that taking cue from the states of Colorado and Washington, each of these individuals would have the annual spending power of around $2,080 for marijuana use.
Those figures come down to project a whopping $3.1 billion market of marijuana within New York. According to Stringer, this would cause New York to gain $435.7 million in annual tax revenue; whereas, New York City would gain $336 million.
He further mentioned that while this would be a new revenue stream through official channels, marijuana essentially already has an underground market that is already functional.
The recreational use of marijuana among the residents of New York is not a secret to anyone. Whether it is through pop culture references or through firsthand accounts, those who are aware of NYC and New York state also know how easy it is to obtain marijuana for recreational purposes.
Stringer not only shared the aforementioned findings about the estimated market, but also mentioned that exceptional revenue could come from marijuana tourism as well (such as 420 lodging within the state).
Apparently thinking along the same lines, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo also set up initiatives to draft a new marijuana legalization bill for the state, which is still under process. Seeing the current political progression made with marijuana legalization in the U.S. and throughout the world, it would not be unassuming to state that the bill has high chances of being passed when it is taken up for discussion by the state’s lawmakers.
As for the current status of marijuana in the states that it is legal, the industry is thriving through subsectors of specialty shops and marijuana hotels, all of which contribute to the kind of growth that has been noted for the states of California, Colorado, and Washington.
It would be interesting to see just how quickly states like New York adopt and legalize marijuana, especially after the results that these aforementioned results have shown within their annual revenue streams.
The benefits from that come from legalization in the form of taxation, regulation, consumer safety and more would certainly create more jobs, a cleaner perception and cost savings in direct was and indirect ways as well.