Oregon legalized all forms of marijuana in 2015, when the state passed SB-460, allowing dispensaries to sell both recreational and medical marijuana. These dispensaries are now able to sell concentrates, edibles, tinctures, seeds, and all forms of marijuana to adults with a valid ID. Now, as these marijuana businesses continue to grow, they are affecting the state’s economy.
First, the tax revenue from these marijuana sales tops $65 million, surpassing the net marijuana tax revenue the Legislative Revenue Office initially estimated for the state. Oregon is still bringing in these numbers even though the tax rate on dispensaries has dropped. In January 2016, the state started collecting a 25% tax from recreational sales at dispensaries, and a year later, recreational shops opened with a 17% tax, but the state is still taking in millions of dollars in marijuana sales. In addition to bringing in revenue, Oregon’s marijuana businesses are bringing in approximately 12,500 jobs. This includes the employees working directly with the marijuana plants including sellers, growers, processors, and more, because there are more than 1,200 applications in the pipeline to join that list of businesses.