According to the state’s Department of Revenue, there was more than $1.5 million in marijuana and marijuana products sold in Montana during the first two days of legal sales (January 1st and 2nd).
Legal marijuana sales began in Montana on Saturday, January 1st. On that day, and the following day, there was over $1.5 million in legal marijuana sold. The state’s 20% tax rate allowed the state to garner $313,000 from recreational marijuana sales.
In addition, there was $443,000 in medical marijuana sold during the same period, bringing in another $17,300 in taxes for the state (medical marijuana has a much lower tax rate of 4%).
“This is a great start to what will prove to be a significant tax contribution from Montana’s cannabis industry,” says Pepper Petersen, president and CEO of the Montana Cannabis Guild.
Under the new law, approved by voters in November, 2020 and implemented by the legislature, adults 21 and older are allowed to purchase up to an ounce of marijuana, up to eight grams of marijuana concentrates and up to 800 mg of edible THC.
According to the Associated Press, the first $6 million in taxes on recreational marijuana each year will go to fund Medicaid programs to increase behavioral health and addiction treatment in Montana. 20% of what remains will fund wildlife habitat, a total of 12% would go to state parks, trails and nongame wildlife while 3% — up to $200,000 — would go to a fund that provides services for veterans and surviving spouses and children. Another $300,000 this year will provide grants to law enforcement agencies to buy and train drug detection dogs and their handlers while $150,000 goes to the board of crime control to fund crisis intervention team training. Any additional money goes to the state general fund.
Only businesses that had sold medical marijuana prior to the November 2020 election are eligible to sell recreational marijuana through July 2023, when additional businesses can be licensed.
Recreational marijuana is currently available in 29 of the state’s 56 counties.