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World Illinois to Record $1 Billion Marijuana Sales by Year's End, Surpassing Liquor

03:30  04 may  2021
03:30  04 may  2021 Source:   newsweek.com

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Last year , Illinois sold about 0 million in cannabis and took in 5.4 million in tax revenue. Illinois took in more tax dollars from marijuana than alcohol for the first time last quarter, the state Department of Revenue reported last month. “As the State’ s economic recovery continues, tax collections have surpassed expectations and forecasts have improved,” the report states. “In addition, the State will also benefit from a historic amount of federal aid and new revenues from tax increases, the legalization of recreational marijuana , and online sports betting, totaling an estimated .7 billion in SFY 2021-22.”

So far this year , recreational pot dispensaries in Illinois have sold nearly 6.7 million marijuana products worth a total of more than 0 million. To qualify as a social equity applicant, a majority of the company’ s ownership must either have spent 5 of the last 10 years living in an area disproportionately affected by the war on drugs, or have a prior arrest or conviction for a drug-related crime that is eligible for engagement; or have at least 10 full-time employees, most of whom.

Illinois is set to record more than $1 billion in sales of adult-use marijuana products this year, with first quarter cannabis tax revenue already surpassing that of alcohol.

a man sitting on a table: Customer Elise Swopes makes a purchase at Sunnyside Cannabis Dispensary on January 1, 2020 in Chicago, Illinois. - On the first day of 2020, recreational marijuana became legal in Illinois, which joins 10 other US states with legal use of recreational marijuana. © KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI / AFP/Getty Images Customer Elise Swopes makes a purchase at Sunnyside Cannabis Dispensary on January 1, 2020 in Chicago, Illinois. - On the first day of 2020, recreational marijuana became legal in Illinois, which joins 10 other US states with legal use of recreational marijuana.

The state of Illinois, whose lawmakers are eyeing bankruptcy options amid a huge budget deficit, generated more than $86 million from adult-use marijuana tax revenue between January and March 2021. Illinois received $72 million from liquor sales. The state has repeatedly broken its own monthly weed sales records, with both in- and out-of-state adult sales hitting $28 million in March alone. During the last quarter, the state Department of Revenue took in more tax dollars from marijuana receipts than alcohol for the first time ever. Adults from both in- and out-of-state spent nearly $110 million on recreational cannabis products during just the month of March.

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Since recreational marijuana became legal in Illinois on January 1 , sales have surpassed 0 million. Since cannabis became legal in the Land of Lincoln on New Year ' s Day, recreational sales have surpassed 0 million in 2020 - 5 million since the pandemic began in March, reported the Chicago Tribune. Of that total, million - or about one -fifth - worth of weed was sold in July alone, more than in any month this year .

Illinois dispensary sales set a new record in June, too. Overall, Marijuana Business Factbook projections expect combined marijuana sales to pass billion by the end of 2020. That would push the cannabis market past prescription pain medicine (. 1 billion ) and craft beer (.6 billion) in annual sales . Cannabis sales were down 25% in May from last year in the same month.

Should Illinois sales of marijuana and cannabis products continue at this rate, the state is set to surpass $1 billion in adult sales by the end of 2021.

Recent data from the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation, which oversees dispensary licensing, show consumers are spending around $3.5 million each day on adult-use cannabis products. If that trend continues, Illinois dispensaries are set to surpass $1.5 billion worth of cannabis sales this year.

The budget boon has prompted comments from neighboring state politicians, including Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers who remarked last week, "Frankly, I'm kind of tired of talking to the governor of Illinois…he thanks me for having Wisconsinites cross the border to buy marijuana."

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Within the first week of legalization, shops have seen over 271,000 legal marijuana sales , the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation said. The state' s 37 dispensaries have churned out over 271,000 sales since the start of the new year , the department said. A portion of the sales is returned to a community reinvestment fund, said Toi Hutchinson, senior advisor to the Governor for cannabis control.

June 2019 saw Illinois become the 11th state to legalize the sale /purchase of marijuana , and it rang in the new year with its first recreational marijuana sales . Chicago-based Cresco Labs, a cannabis company, purportedly spent weeks training over 500 employees in Illinois on educating new marijuana users prior to the first of the new year .

Last year, Illinois sold $670 million worth of marijuana-related products within state lines, pulling in about $205 million in total tax revenue. This comes as both the city of Chicago and the state eyes bankruptcy options and faces at least $140 billion in unfunded pension liability, $50 billion in expected retiree health care costs, about $3 billion in federal pandemic loans and several billions more in unpaid costs.

The government finance watchdog group Truth in Accounting gave the city of Chicago's government an "F" for its financial health rating in a February report card. But the state has repeatedly sought to exhibit that the marijuana revenue is being put to good use, including the Restore, Reinvest, and Renew program which allocates 25 percent of these tax dollars to communities most harmed by the ongoing war on drugs. The program allows for legal aid, youth development programs and business incentives for disadvantaged neighborhoods.

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Illinois rings in the new year on Wednesday by joining 10 states and the District of Columbia in allowing the legal sale and purchase of marijuana . The law will also allow for people with low-level marijuana convictions to have their records scrapped, an increasingly common provision in marijuana bills aimed at helping those hit hardest by the war on drugs. However, not everyone is convinced the state law will remedy the impact drug laws have had in Illinois , particularly for communities of color, or solve any budget woes.

Colorado has surpassed $ 1 billion in tax revenue from marijuana sales since recreational use was legalized in 2014. Marijuana tax, license and fee revenue has reached .02 billion, and marijuana sales over .5 billion, the Colorado Department of Revenue announced in a news release. Marijuana revenue funds a range of youth and public health programs in Colorado, including mental health services, youth literacy initiatives and anti-bullying programs in schools. Marijuana tax revenue goes to both state and local governments. “This industry is helping grow our economy by creating jobs

Illinois Department of Revenue records for the fiscal year 2021 show adult-use cannabis brought $13.9 million into the state comptroller's office in July 2020 before reaching $30.4 million this past January.

New York state, which legalized cannabis for adult recreational use in March, issued a report which showed it expects $20 million in marijuana tax revenue for fiscal year 2021–22. Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli announced recently that the state hopes to increase that to $245 million by 2024–25.

"As the State's economic recovery continues, tax collections have surpassed expectations and forecasts have improved," the report reads. "In addition, the State will also benefit from a historic amount of federal aid and new revenues from tax increases, the legalization of recreational marijuana, and online sports betting, totaling an estimated $26.7 billion in SFY 2021–22."

Newsweek reached out to Illinois state Department of Revenue for additional remarks Monday afternoon.

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