The tax data is in: High praise for Colorado's progressive stance on marijuana is only growing stronger. Marijuana sales have risen month over month throughout 2014, with revenue reaching $19 million in March and more than $22 million in April.
"Not only is the state making money off a once-taboo drug, but it seems to be doing so with few problems," writes Vox reporter German Lopez.
The spike in sales is in part attributable to Colorado's first legal celebration of 4/20, and especially to pot mecca Denver. The weekend of the "holiday" coincided with a 73 percent increase in searches for Colorado hotels. As Lopez points out, these sales stand to increase steadily as pot becomes even more accessible. Many Colorado jurisdictions are still in the process of making pot shops legal, and more than 100 such shops are waiting to open.
As part of the deal to legalize recreational marijuana in the state, voters decreed that $40 million of tax revenue would go to the Colorado Department of Education. Approximately $1.9 million of that has been raised to date.
Moreover, in contrast to the violence of 2013's 4/20 celebration, though crime hasn't been nipped in the bud, violent and property crime rates in Denver mellowed throughout April.