Cannabis and the Economy: How Does Cannabis Legislation Affect the Economy?


How does cannabis legislation affect the economy? Marijuana has been used in every culture across the world for centuries. Since the 20th Century, many countries have started to look at the plant as its potential. The United States of America, for many decades, has battled with the unforgiving results of its wrongful use. And its effects on people of every age. Now that scientific research and cultural practices have converged on the battlefield, marijuana is winning the war on BIPOC and poor people. 

Cannabis legislation has been a topic of intense debate in recent years, especially as more and more states are legalizing the “drug.” Laypeople best know it as marijuana. It is one of the most significant cash crops in America—it was worth roughly $35 billion to the U.S. economy in 2016.

Put Your Hands Down! Cannabis Laws in Colorado - The Stone
Put Your Hands Down! Cannabis Laws in Colorado – The Stone

Does Marijuana Legislation Affect the Economy?

Cannabis legalization has become a topic of debate for many years. It’s the most widely used illegal drug in the world. It is also known as marijuana, pot, grass, weed, hemp, and hashish, among other names. It contains psychoactive chemicals called cannabinoids responsible for its psychological effects on users.

Cannabis use dates back to at least 3000 B.C.

It was discovered by our ancestors who cultivated it for food and fiber while using parts of the plant for medicine and spiritual purposes. It has long been associated with counterculture movements during different periods – from hippie movements in the 1960s to reggae music in the 1970s. pot use is illegal in most countries for recreational or medical reasons. Still, many countries have decriminalized marijuana possession and allowed it to be used for prescribed medical purposes.

Many users of Cannabis, both in the secular world and religious fraternity, have advocated for governments to take a step back and invest in learning about the plant. The hard-line taken to classify the plant as a dangerous drug needs to be addressed. So, people can make informed decisions. The United States is beginning to lead the charge, albeit carefully in its decision to decriminalize. Because of this, they have started to see the possibilities when regulation and being informed can aid in economies growing, new medical aids available, and lives changing for the better. 

I say carefully; because the use of marijuana is not legal on a Federal level.

Cannabis Laws in Colorado You should Read This - The Stone
Cannabis Laws in Colorado You should Read This – The Stone

It is permitted at the state levels that have considered lobbying by forward-thinking individuals within the state governments. Each state in the United States is governed by its legislation; it is easier for legislation at this level. And for all that, legally selling Cannabis for medical use is what is available. Recreational use is still regulated, and the amounts sold for recreational use are less than what is authorized for dispensaries to sell. Depending on which democratically voted government runs the country, considerations may be made for talks to begin or continue. 

Economic Benefits of Cannabis 

Cannabis has been legalized in some U.S states for medicinal and recreational uses. The marijuana industry is emerging as a growing economy with vast employment opportunities across the United States. Dispensaries are popping up all over Colorado and California, which significantly contribute to the local economy through jobs, taxes, licensing fees, etc. Legalization could generate 1 million dollars in tax revenue per year while creating 10,000 new jobs across Colorado alone. 

Consumers are also spending large amounts of money on products derived from hemp.

New York Seal with Cannabis Buds behind it

This ranges from food items to biofuel, textiles, and paper products which greatly benefit the economy. Legalization is also giving rise to the new innovative technology in the industry, which has the potential to generate billions of dollars in recent economic activity on an annual basis. Legislation has a significant impact on the market and the general economy by promoting job creation, tourism, taxation, research, etc.

The legislation gives us insight into how the industry would affect the economy while examining employment rates, tax revenue, and total output throughout various countries. Both national and state governments stand to gain from its legalization through increased administrative efficiency and additional resources resulting from the taxation of legal industries such as dispensaries (Emmett Reistroffer). 

Legalizing it may provide public health benefits by allowing patients to use it for medicinal purposes instead of prescription drugs.

Prescription drugs, of course, are more harmful and produce dangerous side effects. Legislation is paving the way for new businesses to emerge in the industry, which has great potential to boost the economy through job creation, government spending on research, etc.

State revenue would rise should Cannabis be legalized across the United States. Based on New Frontier Data, in 2017, at the federal level, earnings from sales would be $131.8 billion between 2017 and 2025. As it is now, tax collection is only from legal dispensaries, so imagine what lost revenue is from illegal sales. 

Job creation is another benefit of the legalization of cannabis sales.

The Smol Differences between Cannabis Edibles and CBD Edibles - The Stone
The Smol Differences between Cannabis Edibles and CBD Edibles – The Stone

Jobs would not be farm-specific, but think of the different jobs created; farming, distribution, drivers, retailers, and dispensaries. There are other job titles attached to the industry. With this newfound space for employment, New Frontier Data has estimated within the same period. A whopping 1.1 million jobs could be created.

Investments would skyrocket; as the industry was booming, even flourishing and operating under the radar of federal legislation. So, consider the magnitude of takers there would be to invest. 

Law enforcement charges for illegal pot businesses would fall because legal prices would stabilize, and the only control would be the levels of potency in products being sold. Overall a regulated company for entrepreneurs, cottage businesses would thrive, and people would feel comfortable purchasing the legalized amounts for use, whether medically or recreationally.

It’s also one of the country’s largest employers.

Cannabis Class How Does THC Work in the Body - The Stone
Cannabis Class How Does THC Work in the Body – The Stone

The industry employs between 165,000-230,000 people, similar to the number of people used by the entire U.S. construction industry. As marijuana legislation changes nationwide, this high demand for employees grows. Many employees are working legal jobs in dispensaries or growing operations; however, plenty is still operating under the table or illegally through the black market. Marijuana legislation is mainly aimed at restricting this ad hoc market.

Marijuana-related crimes have been a cash crop for law enforcement agencies across the country, especially in areas with dispensaries and grows close to residential areas. Cannabis legislation has emphasized employees’ right to work and not jeopardize their safety by working illegally. This type of legislation does not always pass; however, when it does, it helps ganja entrepreneurs secure jobs that provide livable wages and benefits while protecting them from potential danger. As more states legalize marijuana, cannabis legislation completely changes the way Americans view the industry.

Source: 

The Motley Fool, 5 Economic Reasons to Legalize Marijuana



Featured - Cannabis and the Economy: How Does Cannabis Legislation Affect the Economy?

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Best The Stone Dispensary Deal

 

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