Denver, CO: The pro-reform group Drug Policy Alliance recently released a comprehensive report examining Colorado’s first full year of retail sales of recreational marijuana.
DPA reports that in 2010 Colorado had 9,022 cannabis possession arrests; in 2014 it had 1,464 arrests (an 84% reduction). Also, cannabis cultivation and selling offenses were also down 90% during this same time.
Over 16,000 employees are licensed to work at cannabis-related businesses in the state, helping to push Colorado’s unemployment rate to its lowest point in six years. Not factoring medical cannabis sales, the state has taken in more than $50 million in sales taxes for recreational use.
From a public safety standpoint the DPA report concludes that the state saw a 3% decline in fatal auto accidents during the first year of legal cannabis sales and that over $8 million in cannabis tax revenue has gone directly to support youth prevention and education.
For more information, please contact Allen St. Pierre, NORML Executive Director, or Erik Altieri, NORML Communications Director, at (202) 483-5500. To download and read the entire DPA report, visit http://www.drugpolicy.org/sites/default/files/Colorado_Marijuana_Legalization_One_Year_Status_Report.pdf