According to CNN News, ” Colorado began allowing the sale of recreational marijuana on January 1 to anyone age 21 or older. Residents can now buy marijuana like alcohol – except the cannabis purchase is limited to an ounce, which is substantial enough to cost about $200 or more”.
Colorado and Washington state approved the sale of recreational marijuana and it has been legal for last year in these states. But now the drug could be sold commercially to non medical customers. Colorado became the first place in the world where marijuana will be regulated from seed to sale.
How come? Easy: 55% of voters said yes to legalizing recreational marijuana.
” Retail weed will have a 25% state tax — plus the usual state sales tax of 2.9% — making recreational pot one of the most heavily taxed consumer products in Colorado. Some communities are adding even more taxes to the product”, CNN News said.
And this was one of the principal arguments of legalization advocates. Another one “was that cannabis has long been considered safer than alcohol and tobacco and was not thought not to cause overdose”.
Result? At least a couple dozen stores are already operating. An estimated $1 million in pot sales took place in Colorado on New Year’s Day, said Betty Aldworth, deputy director of National Cannabis Industry Association to ” Chicago Tribune”. If sales continue at the current rate, the state could see $260 million made by marijuana by the end of the year.
Politicians count tax-profits for the state, but critics have big concerns: whether the new policy will increase teen use or lead to marijuana trickling out of the state. According to azcentral.com ” Dr. Christian Thurstone, Colorado Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Society president and youth addiction researcher at the University of Colorado-Denver, observed that his clinic has been “inundated with young people reporting for marijuana-addiction treatment. … Every day, we see the acute effects of the policy of legalization. And our kids are paying a great price.”
But what does the law say? ” Adults aged 21 or older can grow up to three immature and three mature cannabis plants privately in a locked space, legally possess all cannabis from the plants they grow (as long as it stays where it was grown), legally possess up to one ounce of cannabis while traveling,and give as a gift up to one ounce to other citizens 21 years of age or older. Consumption is permitted in a manner similar to alcohol, with equivalent offenses proscribed for driving. Public consumption remains illegal.
Colorado Amendment 64 also provides for licensing of cultivation facilities, product manufacturing facilities, testing facilities, and retail stores.”
What do you thing about recreational marijuana legalization in Colorado?