Marijuana sales up almost 60 percent in April: Thanks, 4/20

Categories: Marijuana

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April saw a lot more than crop-watering showers in the marijuana world. According to the Colorado Department of Revenue, about $22 million in recreational pot was sold in April, up nearly 60 percent from January, when retail sales started.

Meanwhile, medical marijuana sales -- which still far outpace recreational sales -- dropped from about $34.47 million in March to $31.7 million in April. April medical marijuana patient figures aren't available yet, but the state's MMJ registry has been slowly increasing over the past few months and had 115,208 patients as of March 31.

The huge jump in recreational sales means a sizable increase in tax revenue for the state. Colorado collected $3.5 million in combined state sales tax, 10 percent marijuana tax and 15 percent excise tax on recreational marijuana sales in April, as well as nearly $1 million from state sales tax on medical marijuana. According to the state, $1.9 million in excise-tax revenue has been collected since the start of the year, all of which will go toward public school building construction and maintenance.

The City of Denver -- where the majority of the state's recreational dispensaries are located -- saw about $13.25 million in recreational sales in April and contributed $384,369 in state sales tax alone, according to tax figures.

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Photo by Kyle Huninghake
A photo from this year's 4/20 event at Civic Center Park.
Given a city tax rate of 7.12 percent on recreational marijuana, Denver saw $943,692 in marijuana tax collections in April. Since January 1, more than $40.75 million in recreational marijuana has been sold in Denver, and the city has collected more than $2.9 million in city sales tax -- on top of $596,661 from state sales-tax kickbacks.

Medical marijuana sales are also subject to a 3.5 percent Denver sales tax. So far this year, Denver has seen $63.3 million in medical sales, bringing in about $2,217,603 in sales taxes.

No doubt a large portion of April's big haul came from the 4/20 holiday. As Westword reported in mid-April, hotel searches were up nearly 73 percent as visitors from around the world arrived for the annual Civic Center event and the High Times Cannabis Cup.

But we reported yesterday, not everyone is pleased with the tax windfall for the state. Marijuana attorney Rob Corry has filed a lawsuit arguing that the taxes (and, indeed, the entire medical and recreational marijuana system) are illegal and should be struck down.

More from our Marijuana archive: "Lawsuit claims special pot taxes are illegal and unconstitutional" and "KC Stark on the MMJ Business Academy and the Silicon Valley of pot."

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56 comments
KathleenChippi
KathleenChippi topcommenter

"As we've noted, Chippi believes Amendment 64's backers were remiss in implying that the measure legalizes marijuana in a broader sense, rather than allowing use and possession of small amounts (one ounce or under) by adults age 21 and over. (She's also critical of media outlets for not drawing this distinction.) Likewise, she believes voters "need clarification that the language in A64 does not repeal the majority of jail-able offenses (felonies) and leaves marijuana in the definitions of the state Controlled Substances Act, which makes all cannabis users subject to lose: employment, unemployment benefits, housing, school grants, government aid, child custody, fire arms and occupational licenses (of which DORA says 75% of workers in Colorado have) and their freedom. The voters also deserve an apology."

http://blogs.westword.com/latestword/2012/11/marijuana_amendment_64_complaint_boulder_district_attorney.php

Zach Stock
Zach Stock

Don't worry they will spend it all somehow on marijuana enforcement cause that's what we all voted for right? More cops and investigators for marijuana was definitely my intention when I voted for a64!

Claudia Rueda
Claudia Rueda

Wait! Wasn't it already set to go to education/schools?!

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

 "According to the state, $1.9 million in excise-tax revenue has been collected since the start of the year, all of which will go toward public school building construction and maintenance."


Six months passed and only $1.9 million collected?? ... that's not even enough to build a single school. 


Looks like the LYING LIARS behind that piece of shit A64 have been EXPOSED -- Lyin' Brian Vicente, Mendacious Mason Tvert and Bullshit Betty Aldworth are abject FRAUDS, falsely promising $40 MILLION / year -- complete BULLSHIT which they SIMPLY FABRICATED to DECEIVE the Voters and Politicians. 


The State ought to collect the $36 MILLION shortfall from Vicente, Tvert, Aldworth and the other lying A64 pimps and promoters ... or make good on A64's promise and RAISE the Excise Tax rate to WHATEVER LEVEL is necessary to generate a MINIMUM $40 MILLION every year!





RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

Buying retail cannabis means paying Gov. Hack, cops, prosecutors, and the State bureaucracy to work on imaginary problems caused by the use of cannabis and to try to prevent its further use -- don't do it, if you can possibly avoid it!

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@KathleenChippi Don't be a reactionary.  There is no way to re-draft the initiatives of 2012, or vote again on Amendment 64, nor will you ever achieve your goal of persuading the masses of the perfidy of the drafters.  We agreed that the measure would not achieve the legalization of cannabis (and it hasn't), but you went into canniptions over the campaign's claims to the contrary.  I agree that many, many things should have been done differently, and that many of the people who misdirected the process are still perceived to have been the authors of what the media and most of society now imagine is legalized cannabis, but let us look to the future (an apology from Mason/MPP/Brian et alia is impossibly unlikely, ever and it is not what we need now either).


The commerce in cannabis must serve the goal of ending Prohibition, or it acts irresponsibly at best, or in complicity with prohibitionists at worst.  Of those who have owned dispensaries, you are exemplary in your political commitment and involvement, but the mass of the industry, especially since the State hijacked it, is apolitical, and can not conceive of engaging in effective political education, organization, or activism.  Worse, some dispensaries are lobbying for what they hope will ingratiate themselves with lawmakers and regulators -- we saw the industry lie down when the concentrates bill HB14-1361 and the edibles bill HB14-1366 came roaring through the last session of General Assembly during its last days.  Disappointingly but predictably, the Drug Policy Alliance approved of these bills too (presumably both industry and its backers were afraid to oppose them because legislators were determined to pass laws on those subjects irrespective of how little sense they made).  I can less forgive DPA's failure to acknowledge the existence of SB14-215, using most of the taxes from retail cannabis to shore up Prohibition.


Now that the Establishment is giving much of the substantial sales tax revenue from retail cannabis directly to the prohibitionists, we should take a stand.  We need to bring home to voters in general that the taxes they approved on cannabis were immediately misspent.  People who use cannabis should not pay those taxes; if that means becoming patients or growing their own, they should.  Dispensaries must start to support activism to end Prohibition, because the State is bent upon making them its agents!

KathleenChippi
KathleenChippi topcommenter

Unfortunately that IS EXACTLY what you and the majority voted FOR but no one reads or comprehends in this dumbed down America. 


I have been calling it prohibition on steroids since I read A64 back in 2011.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Did you even read, much less comprehend, what A64 actually proposed?


DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

... only the Excise Tax, which is so pathetic it won't even generate 1/10th of what the Lying Liars behind A64 promised.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

... Jah knows the Stoners need it.

RHS.
RHS.

@DonkeyHotay Life is a lot easier when you just make up your facts on the spot, huh?


Nobody promised $40 million a year. They said that the first $40 million would go to schools. There's a big difference, but you're apparently too stupid (or willfully ignorant) to understand that.


Try and keep up. You're starting to sound like clueless Robert Chase.

RHS.
RHS.

@RobertChase Please shut up, Robert Chase. 


You've completely thrown any credibility you may have had out the window with your childish need to respond to everything Donkey_Hotay writes and the way that you cluelessly walk into his setups that make you look like an even bigger ego-driven moron. 


For someone who claims to be so smart, you sure act like a dumb ass.



DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase



"Granting the DOR regulatory authority over retail sales of cannabis is not bad at all" 

-- Robert Chase 

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase


"Granting the DOR regulatory authority over retail sales of cannabis is not bad at all" 

-- Robert Chase 


"Amendment 64 will prevent ~10,000 arrests for cannabis annually in Colorado" 

-- Robert Chase


"I do not believe that there will be any fallout for medical cannabis" 

-- Robert Chase


"There has been no fallout from having passed Amendment 64"

 -- Robert Chase



YOU, and politically clueless nitwits like you, are 100% responsible for ALL the predictable negative blowback that festering turd A64 is causing.



DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@KathleenChippi ... b..b..but lyin' Brian Vicente, mendacious Mason Tvert, bullshit Betty Aldworth and Wasteword told everyone it was 


LEE-GUL-EYE-ZAY-SHUN !!



RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@RHS.  If you can't argue facts with me, insinuate ad hominem!


You happen to be right about the excise -- Donkey engages in this sort of argument for exercise, because he believes some readers are dumb enough to be fooled, and because he enjoys believing he's fooled some.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RHS. ... stating "the first $40 million" will go to schools, every year, implies there will be at least $40 million.



RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@RHS.  Please shut up, RHS -- rather idiotic of you to post that here; I don't engage in tit-for-tat with Donkey, but you do!  You would be the pot calling the kettle black.  You clearly don't like my post; buying cannabis at retail now means that ~13% of the proceeds goes to support the pigs!

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RHS.


"Amendment 64 would not stop unjust imprisonment for offenses related to cannabis, legalize cannabis, or regulate it like alcohol " 

-- Robert Chase 


barbarian.bob1
barbarian.bob1

@DonkeyHotay @RobertChase hows casnnabisw legalizations problems hurting you lolol we can all gro 12 humomgus plants and ignore the dispensariesa  LOLOLOL WOE WON U LOST

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay  Why do you try to misdirect the onus that belongs on Democrats and Republicans onto the People's decision to legalize some limited use of cannabis?

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase @RHS.



"Amendment 64 will prevent ~10,000 arrests for cannabis annually in Colorado" 

-- Robert Chase

RHS.
RHS.

@DonkeyHotay @RHS.


No, it doesn't. Not at all. 


Keep swinging for the fences, kiddo. Someday you might get a single out of it.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase "I don't engage in tit-for-tat with Donkey"


Yes you do!


But it's mostly tit, not so much tat.




GuestWho
GuestWho topcommenter

@barbarian.bob1    People like you who purposely exploit the law are the reason strict regulations exist.  ...I personally don't think it's funny.  Bob, if marijuana is really legal how about taking pics of your pounds of herb and post it online along with your real name and contact info?  

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase ... YOU, and myopic ignorant fucktards like you, are the ones who SURRENDERED TOTAL CONTROL of marijuana over to those Prohibitionist Politicians, and the  Insatiable Incompetent Dept. of Revenue -- all for a pathetic ounce and 3 flowering plants.


So quit your whining, you got EXACTLY what you voted for via that rancid turd A64.



DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RHS. ... another BIG LIE from the Lying Liars behind A64 is exposed.


There is no "first $40 million" annual funding of school construction, and never will be.


The Excise Tax at the current 15% level won't even hit $4 million based on actual revenue to date.


So the Lying Liars and Pot Pimps behind A64 LIED and EXAGGERATED by a factor of 10.


Typical Stoners, just make shit up, like Bullshit Betty Aldworth who already admitted she just made up the revenue projections she fed to and hyped the clueless media with back in January.



barbarian.bob1
barbarian.bob1

we got free legal weed 12 big plants you got anger and mental dissonance lolo

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay  Moron!  Most people (~80%) do not use cannabis -- the election was not limited to those who do.  Any rational person should be able to grasp the concept that people hold differing views, and many opposed even the limited legalization of cannabis accomplished by the Amendment.  20% of the electorate cannot adopt an uncompromising position opposed by more and win.  We are far better off having legalized many retail purchases than in having all remain felonious.  The People's declaration that cannabis "should be regulated in a manner similar to alcohol" in our Constitution should spur activists to demand the rescission of felonies for cannabis -- I do.

RHS.
RHS.

@DonkeyHotay @RHS.


Again, you're making shit up just to be mad at it. Who cares if they don't reach 40 million? Any money schools get out of this is above and beyond what they had before. 


And if you don't think that $1.9 million is enough to get some construction projects done at public schools, you're a fool or simply don't understand the needs of public schools. Or both. I think it is both.


(also -  learn to let shit go. Your obsession with Betty Aldworth is bordering on psychotic.)

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase " The People's declaration that cannabis "should be regulated in a manner similar to alcohol" in our Constitution should ..."


... have been properly and explicitly spelled out in THE PROVISIONS of A64 ... but the incompetent authors of A64 were too fucking stupid to properly draft such an important Constitutional Amendment, so they FAILED to do so, rendering said "declaration" utterly meaningless and without any force of law.


Epic FAIL!

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase ... the percentage of regular marijuana users is closer to 10%.


Any rational person who had at least half a functioning brain would realize that surrendering total control to the 90% who don't use cannabis, and offering up as a foundation the promise of massive $$$ revenue in the form of unlimited taxation to the prohibitionists and opposition would predictably result in a Pyrrhic "victory" ... at best.


If spineless morons like you were in charge of negotiating for the Palestinians, you'd foolishly surrender total control of The West Bank, Gaza and Jerusalem to the Israelis, in exchange for the limited privilege of being allowed to grow 6 olive trees, no more than 3 of which are producing olives, and only for those Palestinians who are over 21, further restricting possession of olives to one can, and no public consumption allowed ... but graciously allowing Palestinians the ability to purchase overpriced, overtaxed Israeli produced and controlled olives if they wanted more ... and like the pig-ignorant fucktard that you are, you'd assert that is "far better" than what the Palestinians have now.


You surrendered -- game over -- no more "baby steps" -- you took and received the ONLY step you foolishly bargained for, and now you're standing in and forever stuck in your own putrid diaper, whilst whining about the wretched smell.


Get REGULATED, bitch -- YOU bargained and voted for it.



...


DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RHS. ... LOL!


How many new schools, elementary, middle or high, do you think can be constructed for $1.9 million?


How many can be built for $5.9 million?


Where's the $40 MILLION the lying liars behind A64 promised?


The total Statewide Public School budget is $5.5 BILLION ... your pathetic $5 million isn't even 1/10th of 1% of the Statewide Public School budget.





RHS.
RHS.

@DonkeyHotay @RHS.

"The Excise Tax at the current 15% level won't even hit $4 million based on actual revenue to date."


1.9 million in four months… at that rate it would be $5.7 million by the end of the year.


Are you still drunk from last night, or is all the cocaine you put up your nose making your simple math jittery?

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay  It is nonsense to claim that the statement of the purpose of Article XVIII, Section 16 of our Constitution is "utterly meaningless".  It is easy for those of us in possession of our political wits to conceive of an uncompromising assertion of our right to use cannabis which would have lost.  It is entirely irrational to have spent any time trying to villify Amendment 64 after it passed (and you have done more of that than anyone else) -- those of us who want to end Prohibition look forward to further constitutional and statutory changes which will do so.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay If only 10% of the population uses cannabis, your arguments makes even less sense (if that is possible).  Regardless of which figure is more accurate (and most people who use cannabis seem to suppose that more than 20% of Coloradans do), one thing is certain:  we are in no position to dictate how public policies on cannabis are changed.  What we can do is organize and articulate a case for ending Prohibition -- any time now.

RHS.
RHS.

@DonkeyHotay "The total Statewide Public School budget is $5.5 BILLION ... your pathetic $5 million isn't even 1/10th of 1% of the Statewide Public School budget."



LOL. You can try as much as you want to make $1.9 million in additional funding for schools sound insignificant, but it doesn't make it true.


Hip Tip: Move on to a better argument against Amendment 64. Spending so much time bitching about money going to kids doesn't help your cause.

RHS.
RHS.

@DonkeyHotay Again, you're too dense (or stupid) to understand that the money goes to the Public School capital Construction Assistance Fund - which also helps fund construction projects and improvements at existing schools.



"THE FIRST FORTY MILLION DOLLARS IN REVENUE RAISED ANNUALLY FROM ANY SUCH EXCISE TAX SHALL BE CREDITED TO THE PUBLIC SCHOOL CAPITAL CONSTRUCTION ASSISTANCE FUND CREATED BY ARTICLE 43.7 OF TITLE 22, C.R.S., OR ANY SUCCESSOR FUND DEDICATED TO A SIMILAR PURPOSE"


Did you even read, much less comprehend, what A64 actually proposed?

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase ... your legal idiocy is showing again.


The preamble statement of purpose is LEGALLY MEANINGLESS -- it's just oratory -- anyone with even a rudimentary comprehension of Law knows that the ONLY part of legislation that has any force and effect is in the explicitly enumerated Provisions -- the Black Letter specific recitations of what is or isn't allowed.


You have NO FUCKING IDEA whether an Actual LEGALIZATION -- or decriminalization -- initiative would have lost as you speciously claim, since the Pro Pot Pimps didn't even propose and offer one, instead preemptively surrendering and offering the government controlled commercialization clusterfuck that is A64. The political opportunity of pro-legalization public opinion at the time was wasted and now lost, forever. 


There will be no "moving forward", that festering turd A64 is in the Constitution now, and that is ALL you will ever have -- Government Regulated Commercialization without a SINGLE FELONY marijuana statute repealed, with MASSIVE TAX incentives


Financial incentive for the insatiable Government to CONTINUE to PROHIBIT and/or severely limit individuals from obtaining or producing tax free pot outside the Greedy Big $$ Dispensary Cartels.


The Voters and Politicians did not and do not consider -- as fools like you do -- A64 to be the first "baby step" of many more to come. The Prohibitionists and Bureaucrats consider A64 to be THE TOTAL and FINAL bargain and agreement -- especially since it was Written and Promoted by the "Marijuana Activists" themselves.


A64 is and was the ONLY step you got, and you choked.


Game over, you had your chance, and the support of the temporal political zeitgeist of the wave of Hope and Change, and you squandered it for a PATHETIC OUNCE! and three plants.


3 pathetic plants - when States like California and Oregon had ALREADY established far greater weights and plants counts -- like 24 Plants per Person, and 24 ounces -- a POUND AND A HALF! -- per patient.


You can't "move forward" when you're facing backwards, numbnuts.













DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase <== still clueless.


According to the 10% who are stoners, the Public Opinion polls show that THE MAJORITY of Americans / Coloradans support(ed) LEGALIZATION ... yet instead of running with and taking advantage of  that sentiment and proposing Real Legalization -- or even Full Decriminalization -- you and morons like you proposed the pathetic clusterfuck that is A64.


You HAD the polls for LEGALIZATION -- or Decriminalization -- and instead wrote an idiotic COMMERCIALIZATION referendum that RETAINED 99% of CRIMINAL PROHIBITION.


That's what PUBLIC REFERENDUMS are for, to FORCE via the Public Voting Booth what intransigent Politicians won't do, not continue to surrender to their prohibitionist idiocy.


That's what TABOR did, that's what A20 did, yet A64 didn't even bargain for what A20 had already accomplished on a personal level, it RETREATED from ground already taken and held for 12 years.


Perhaps you'd be happier living in France, with the rest of the Cheese-eating Surrender Monkeys.



DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RHS.


Less than 1/10th of 1% = pathetically insignificant


Where's the $40 MILLION the Lying Pot Pimps promised?


The Legislature should RAISE the Excise Tax from 15% to whatever level is necessary to generate that $40 MILLION minimum annual promise!


Thanks to A64, they will be able to raise it however high they desire in a couple of years.


Tax the Shit out of it!!





barbarian.bob1
barbarian.bob1

@DonkeyHotay @RobertChase we arec winning bigtime and you haters are angry  12 realy big big big plants ten pounds each = 120 lbs  well payoff our mortgages and party every night . lolol

RHS.
RHS.

@DonkeyHotay "Where's the $40 MILLION the Lying Pot Pimps promised?


The Legislature should RAISE the Excise Tax from 15% to whatever level is necessary to generate that $40 MILLION minimum annual promise!"


We already went over that. There was no promise of at least $40 million a year.


You sure are dense, huh?

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RHS. ... RAISE the EXCISE TAX -- as authorized by A64 -- to whatever level is necessary to generate the $40 MILLION / year that was implied and promoted by the Lying Pot Pimps, Vicente, Tvert and Aldworth.


TAX the SHIT out of it !!


You do remember how easy it was for the VOTERS to OVERWHELMINGLY pass Prop. AA?


Reap what ye have sown, suckers.

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