“Marijuana in America: Colorado Pot Rush”

The legal cannabis industry continues to garner mainstream media interest. This week, a one-hour documentary, “Marijuana in America: Colorado Pot Rush,” reported by NBC News Correspondent Harry Smith on CNBC,  chronicles Colorado’s journey as the first state in the U.S. to allow the legal sale of marijuana for recreational use and tells the story behind this controversial and stunning development and the exploding legal pot market, projected to grow as large as $10 billion nationwide by 2018. [Read more…]

Legal Pot To Generate $190 Million For Washington: Report

WASHINGTON:  Washington’s new legal recreational marijuana market is expected to bring nearly $190 million to state coffers over a four-year period starting in mid-2015, according to an economic forecast released Wednesday.

The forecast by the Economic and Revenue Forecast Council showed that $51 million in revenue is expected for the 2015-2017 biennium from marijuana production and sales. An additional $138.5 million is expected for the next two-year budget that ends mid-2019. A little under half of that revenue is expected from excise tax and license fees related to the marijuana market, and the rest is expected to come from retail sales tax and business taxes.

The passage of Initiative 502 in 2012 allowed the sale of the marijuana to adults for recreational use at licensed stores, which are expected to open by this summer.

Steve Lerch, the council’s executive director, said that because of concerns over local moratoriums and bans on pot sales and general uncertainty about how the system will work, the council has made assumptions that sales won’t start until June of next year.

“Obviously, as we see any actual sales we’ll be able to revise, if necessary, our forecast,” he said. “But these seemed like reasonable estimates.”

Colorado Officials, Pot Businesses Clash Over Inventory Tracking

COLORADO:  On the cusp of recreational marijuana sales in Colorado, business owners and state regulators are at odds over a high-tech system that is supposed to track the substance from seed to sale.

The inventory tracking system is incompatible with software many stores already use and requires the purchase of nonreusable tags from the state’s contractor, prompting industry complaints about cost, waste and monopolization.

But state officials say their goal is to enforce the rules, and keeping things simple improves the odds of success when recreational-pot shops open Jan. 1. [Read more…]