We are following the experience of Oregon as they implement legal cannabis. They are going to teach us a lot. Here’s recent information on what this roll-out will cost and what it will return.
The Oregon Liquor Control Commission is requesting that the Legislature establish a 2015-2017 budget for the recreational marijuana program that calls for $10.5 million in costs to operate the program approved by voters last November and anticipates $18.4 million in revenue for the two-year period starting this July.
The requested $10.5 million budget calls for hiring and training 33 employees in the marijuana program beginning later this year. It also includes $1.9 million for the IT projects needed to issue licenses, collect taxes and a traceability (seed to sale) system. It also calls for an additional $636,000 for capital construction and $1.4 million to pay back money borrowed from the Liquor Fund to start the marijuana program during the current 2013-2015 budget period.
The budget, which will be presented to a Legislative Ways and Means Subcommittee on Thursday, includes an estimated $16 million in revenue from the sale of recreational marijuana and another $2.4 million from application and licensing fees. Revenue is based on estimates from the Legislative Revenue Office and could be affected by a number of factors, including how many local jurisdictions opt out of the program, the impact of tourism and the home grow/personal possession provisions of the new law.
Based on the experiences in Colorado and Washington and adjusted for differences in population, the agency anticipates receiving 2,000 license applications from commercial growers, processors, wholesalers and retail outlets during the first six months of the 2016, of which an estimated 1,300 are expected to be approved.
We learn what works and what doesn’t by watching what others do. Then, when our turn comes . . .
[image: Google images “Oregon”]
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