5 Things You Didn’t Know About the Colorado Marijuana Economy

Colorado is recognized as a pioneer in legal cannabis because the state has had a cultural affinity for marijuana for decades, and is the first state to open adult marijuana stores. More than four years have passed since Colorado approved marijuana use for adults, and data shows that the state’s economy has not fallen, but rather improved. Now, legislators and advocates in other states are looking to Colorado as an example for regulating marijuana properly.

Since Colorado legalized all forms of marijuana for adults, the state’s economy has evolved, as it has earned $198.5 million in tax revenue in 2016. The Drug Policy Alliance saw this revenue used for good,  “These revenues fund school construction, marijuana enforcement and general state needs.” Also, Colorado has the lowest unemployment rate, from all the jobs created from the legal marijuana industry in the state. In 2015, Colorado created more than 18,000 new full-time jobs, which dropped the state’s unemployment rate to 2.3%, the lowest in the nation. The overall sales and numbers are positive in the state because old customers are spending more and new patients are entering the market, so Colorado should only expect more sales and growth within the next few years.  

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Lawmakers in Quebec failed to pass a bill that would have increased the minimum age for purchasing and consuming cannabis from 18 to 21 before the end of the legislative session. When the Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) was elected to power in Quebec last year, they brought with them a promise to raise the legal age for buying and consuming recreational cannabis. Right now, anyone 18 or older can legally purchase cannabis in Quebec, which is tied with Alberta for having the lowest legal age for recreational cannabis.

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