Missouri’s medical marijuana program has generated millions of dollars for state coffers in the last year, but officials do not yet know how they’ll spend the money.
Under the constitutional amendment legalizing medical marijuana, application fees from businesses, and a 4% tax on medical marijuana sales, are supposed to go to the Department of Health and Senior Services for it to administer the program.
The remaining money is supposed to be transferred to the newly created Missouri Veterans’ Health and Care Fund — and the constitutional amendment allows the Missouri Veterans Commission latitude in how the money is spent.
The DHSS has already used some of the money to administer the marijuana program, but the Missouri Veterans Commission has yet to receive any funds, and officials don’t know how they’ll use the eventual influx.
Questions over how Missouri will spend the money come as the state prepares for its first legal sales of medical marijuana in the coming months.
The constitutional amendment legalizing medical marijuana says the veterans money may go toward operation, maintenance and capital improvements for veterans homes, the Missouri service officer’s program, and other commission-approved services for veterans, including “health care services, mental health services, drug rehabilitation services, housing assistance, job training, tuition assistance, and housing assistance to prevent homelessness.” [Read more at St. Louis Post-Dispatch]