Alaska tax revenue has begun to grow significantly with the legalization of recreational marijuana and it should begin to make a big difference to the state. Other States like Colorado and Nevada have also seen tremendous growth in tax revenue. States are using these funds to repair roads or for public schools, all things that should improve the quality of life for residents.
Tax revenues derived from Alaska’s legal cannabis industry nearly doubled from May to June, from $272,100 to $512,200 – the most in a single month since sales began in late October, Alaska Dispatch News reports. Officials from the state Department of Revenue are anticipating the trend will continue for July.
“This is really incredible,” said Kelly Mazzei, excise tax supervisor for the tax division, in the report. “We knew it would happen; we just didn’t know when.”
In addition to the sales taxes, 40 growers and 15 cultivators paid the state in June and Alaska netted $1,748,500 from legal cannabis sales during the fiscal year, which ended on June 30. The state had projected $2 million after downgrading their projections twice following slower-than-expected sales in January and February.
In June, 547 pounds of flower and 313 pounds of trim were sold by cultivators in the state. Flower is taxed $50-per-ounce and trim is taxed $15-per-ounce.
“We also anticipate much larger quantities being sold or transferred [in July] by outdoor cultivators as those crops are harvested,” Mazzei said.
Under state law, half of the tax revenues are earmarked for the state’s general fund, while the remaining is used for programs to reduce repeat criminal offenders.