A newly released study is projecting that recreational cannabis in Connecticut could bring in up to $100 million in only four years.
This information was collected by an economics professor at UCONN and backed by the Marijuana Policy Project, which sought to analyze how much money could be generated from recreational cannabis in terms of taxes collected by the state. “The worst-case scenario is they don’t do anything with it,” said Fred Carstensen, the economist behind the study, regarding tax revenue. “They don’t spend it at all and put it in the rainy day fund—17,000 [jobs] is the most optimistic in which all of the money is used to preserve programs. Legalization will generate significant job creation, strong growth in GDP, and hundreds of millions in new tax revenues.”
It is likely that recreational cannabis will eventually become a reality in Connecticut, as Gov. Ned Lamont has said in the past that he’s interested in legalization for his state. “I do believe that our state is better off developing a well-regulated market for cannabis than continuing to rely on the black market,” Lamont said in March 2020. “The black market results in unsafe product, gives children easy access, and results in increased policing costs and efforts. A well-regulated adult use market for cannabis would reduce all of these issues.”
Although some opponents to recreational cannabis claim that legalization could put young people at risk or come with associated costs (despite evidence to back these claims up). It appears that Connecticut will be surrounded by other recreational cannabis states and staffed with supportive politicians.
The most recent progress Connecticut has made in the realm of cannabis was in June 2020, with the expansion of its medical cannabis program. Now, chronic pain is listed as a qualifying condition as long as the patient has suffered for “at least six months duration,” as well as those who suffer from Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome.