All eyes are on Colorado to gauge the impact of the country's first-ever state law to tax and regulate the sale and private use of marijuana for non-medical purposes, which took effect last year. January 1, 2015, marked the one year anniversary since marijuana became available for purchase for adults 21 and older in Colorado. For over two years, the state has also allowed adults to possess and cultivate limited amounts of marijuana.
What's happening with tax revenue, crime rates, marijuana arrests, the economy, youth prevention and traffic safety? What's working and where is there room for improvement? What effect is marijuana legalization having on neighboring states and throughout the country? Will Colorado's legalization law have a ripple effect on the rest of the nation?
Here's what we know so far: According to the state's department of revenue, the first ten months of legal marijuana sales have resulted in nearly $40 million in tax revenue. The city of Denver saw a decrease in violent crime rates in the first 11 months of 2014, following a similar trend in 2013. Statewide traffic fatalities continue to decline, according to the Colorado Department of Transportation. Upwards of $8 million has been allocated to fund youth education and drug prevention efforts. And the state is enjoying economic growth and the lowest unemployment rate in years.
Join Rep. Jared Polis, drug policy reform advocates, prevention experts, and Governor Hickenlooper's marijuana policy coordinator to learn more tomorrow at 11am MST.
WHAT: Press Teleconference: Status report from Colorado after one year of legalized marijuana for recreational purposes.
WHEN: Tuesday, January 6: 11am (MT) / 1pm (ET)
HOW: Contact Tony Newman for more information: 646-335-5384
- Rep. Jared Polis, 2nd District of Colorado, US House of Representatives
- Andrew Freedman, Marijuana Policy Coordinator for Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper
- Art Way, Colorado State Director, Drug Policy Alliance
- Tamar Todd, Director, Marijuana Law and Policy, Drug Policy Alliance
- Matthew Kuehlhorn, One Voice Coalition and Thrive Prevention
- Mike Elliott, Marijuana Industry Group
- Taylor West, National Cannabis Industry Association
- Sharda Sekaran (moderator), Managing Director, Communications, Drug Policy Alliance