Massachusetts finally began allowing recreational marijuana sales a few weeks ago, almost a year later than originally planned. And while the state may have dragged their feet in the process, they're certainly more than happy to spend that cannabis tax money.
Boston.com broke down how the state of Massachusetts plans to spend their cannabis tax revenue. Currently Massachusetts imposes a 17 percent tax on cannabis sales, and local governments are also allowed to add an additional three percent tax as well. The state also projects that in the fiscal year of 2020 (which begins next July) that they should collect between $93 million and $172 million in marijuana tax revenue.
The Massachusetts marijuana tax is split into two parts. The first part is a 6.25 percent sales tax. The tax revenue from that sales tax goes into the state's general fund, which means it can be spent on whatever the state wants. The other 10.75 percent is an excise tax. The money from the excise tax goes to the Marijuana Revenue Fund, which will help cover the costs of the Cannabis Control Commission, the state regulatory board in charge of the marijuana industry.
However, the operating costs for the Cannabis Control Commission are only around $8 million annually. That's plenty of money left over from the excise tax. The remaining money in the Marijuana Revenue Fund goes towards programs that address potential impacts of the newly legal industry as well as helping fund programs attempting to address the harm caused by the War on Drugs.
So if you're in Massachusetts wondering where your marijuana tax money is going, now you know.