The impact of marijuana legalization in Colorado has been less than critics and supporters predicted, according to The Wall Street Journal. The state has seen neither a tax windfall nor dramatic social consequences, the newspaper reports.
Sales of marijuana have been slower than expected, partly due to a 25 percent tax rate for recreational marijuana. Experts say the high tax rate has steered users toward medical marijuana, which is less expensive. The office of Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper last year predicted the state would collect almost $100 million in revenue from recreational marijuana taxes in the fiscal year that began in July. State economists now estimate sales of recreational marijuana will generate $58.7 million in tax revenue for the fiscal year.
“It was an educated guess, because we were dealing with a federally illicit product,” noted Larson Silbaugh, a senior economist with the Colorado Legislative Council.