Arizonans would buy nearly $500 million worth of marijuana a year by 2020 if voters agree in November to allows its use here for recreational purposes, according to a new report.
The Joint Legislative Budget Committee study figures legalization would generate nearly $82 million in taxes when the program is fully implemented. That includes $74 million based on a tax rate of 15 percent of retail costs, with the balance coming from things like licensing dealers and growers.
That puts the price paid by consumers at the cash register north of $490 million.
Legislative budget staffers say $27.8 million of what is collected would go to general aid to education, with an identical amount available to help schools pay for full-day kindergarten.
The analysis was prepared as backers of the initiative prepare to turn in petitions Thursday, June 30, with more than 250,000 signatures to put the issue to voters. Even with a certain percentage likely being disqualified, that should provide a sufficient margin to meet the legally required minimum of 150,642. [Read more at the Arizona Daily Star]