A new analysis shows that residents in the state of Wisconsin bought $121.2 millions worth of cannabis from licensed retailers in Illinois last year. This contributed roughly $36 million in taxes to the neighboring state. The data was requested by Melissa Agard, the Senate Majority Leader, who asked the Legislative Fiscal Bureau to look into how much was going into Illinois through out-of-state marijuana purchases. Agard has in past sessions sponsored legalization measures.
The nonpartisan bureau released its results last week after examining data obtained from the Department of Financial & Professional Regulation in Illinois, which breaks down monthly out-of-state and in-state marijuana sales. These estimates were premised on an assumption that all the out-of-state cannabis purchases within counties bordering Wisconsin were by the state’s residents.
The bureau also highlighted that the exact figures could be lower or higher, based on various factors, such as the possibility that residents of Wisconsin may have completed their marijuana transactions in counties that don’t share a direct border with Wisconsin, such as Cook County, or that a portion of out-of-state sales in border counties came from residents of other neighboring states.
Additionally, the report doesn’t take into account possible sales within other states with adult-use marijuana near Wisconsin.
Despite this, the report does give a rough range of the magnitude of revenue the state of Wisconsin’s missing out on the longer it fails to establish a regulated cannabis market.
A press statement from Agard asserts that the cannabis revenue generated in bordering Illinois could be allocated toward transportation infrastructure, public schools and public safety in Wisconsin. She further noted that legalizing cannabis for responsible use by adults would generate considerable revenue for main streets, support entrepreneurship, reinvest in the state’s agriculture and farming heritage, safely regulate the existing illegal market and address the racial disparities arising from cannabis prohibition.
Agard stated that she planned to introduce her measure again if GOP officials chose to exclude it from the budget, arguing that the time had come to legalize cannabis for the betterment of the state and its residents.
An unrelated report from last month also established that 50% of individuals aged 21 years and older in Wisconsin lived approximately 75 minutes from an out-of-state marijuana retailer. This figure is expected to grow if legislative efforts to legalize cannabis in neighboring Minnesota are successful.
Meanwhile, Governor Tony Evers announced his biennial budgetary estimates in February, which included language to legalize recreational and medical cannabis in the state.
Besides tax benefits, states stand to create significant job opportunities when marijuana is legalized because companies serving that space, such as Advanced Container Technologies Inc. (OTC: ACTX), could grow and need additional manpower as they pursue market opportunities that results from such legislation.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Advanced Container Technologies Inc. (OTC: ACTX) are available in the company’s newsroom at https://cnw.fm/ACTX
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