Marijuana reform’s impacts on Colorado reported.
DENVER — The Colorado Division of Criminal Justice and its Office of Research and Statistics released a report on July 19 showing the impacts of marijuana legalization in the U.S. state of Colorado. After more than seven years since Colorado became the first state in the country to permit the sale and recreational use of marijuana per the passage of Amendment 64. The data shows that pot arrests are down while marijuana use among youth remains noticeably unchanged and that legalization has impacted tax monies.
“This report provides a wealth of valuable information to help policymakers, law enforcement, schools, the marijuana industry, and the public understand the effects of legal recreational marijuana in our communities,” said Stan Hilkey, the executive director of the Department of Public Safety, in a statement. “The information is presented in a comprehensive and unbiased manner, and I am proud of the detailed and extensive work our DCJ researchers have done to collect and analyze this vast compilation of data.”
Since recreational cannabis stores opened and stores opened, Colorado’s government revenues have skyrocketed. The report indicates that a total of $387 million was taken in the 2020 fiscal year. These revenues come from taxes, licenses, and fees. That is an increase of 473 percent from 2014 when governments collected only $67 million, reports The Colorado Sun.
“The total number of marijuana arrests in Colorado has dropped since legalization, although the arrest rate for Black people remained disproportionately high compared to white people,” notes the same press statement from the department.
“The use of marijuana products among adults has increased since legalization, however, youth use did not experience a significant change. Over the past 10 years, Colorado has seen increases in marijuana-related hospitalizations, Emergency Room visits, poison control calls, DUIs, and fatal crashes where drivers tested positive for cannabinoids.”
However, the department states that “it is difficult to draw conclusions about the potential effects of marijuana legalization and commercialization on public safety, public health, or youth outcomes, and this may always be the case due to the lack of historical data.”