- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Nevada’s legal pot shops sold roughly $33.5 million worth of recreational marijuana products in August, the state Department of Taxation revealed Monday, an increase of nearly 24 percent compared to July, the first month of retail weed sales.

Nearly a year after Nevadans voted to legalize recreational marijuana, the latest sales figures suggest the state is on course to meet the expectations of officials who projected retail sales would generate $120 million in cannabis-related tax revenue in two years’ time.

“The tax numbers are going to keep growing,” Democratic state Sen. Tick Segerblom, a major proponent of the marijuana legalization bill passed last year, told The Las Vegas Sun. “There’s a lot more where this came from.”

Nevadans voted in November to legalize recreational marijuana, and a total of 44 dispensaries within the state were licensed to sell retail weed when sales started July 1. Those shops wound up selling more than $27 million worth of marijuana products during the first month of retail sales, in turn generating about $3.7 million in related tax revenue for the state.

Recreational marijuana is subject to two separate taxes in Nevada, including a 10 percent retail sales tax and a 15 percent wholesale tax. The retail tax generated about $3.35 million for the state in August, while the wholesale tax brought in about $1.51 million that month, according to the figures released Monday, totaling roughly $4.86 million in recreational marijuana taxes — nearly a million dollars more than the amount generated during the first month of recreational sales.

Officials previously projected legalizing marijuana sales would earn Nevada about $120 million in tax revenue during the first two years. Officials also projected previously that marijuana sales during the month of August would total only $21.5 million — significantly less than the $33.5 million worth of weed actually sold, according to the latest statistics.

A total of five states currently allow adults to purchase recreational marijuana from retail dispensaries, including Nevada, Colorado, Oregon, Alaska and Washington state. Voters in Maine, Massachusetts and California similarly voted last year to legalize recreational marijuana sales starting in 2018.

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