Pennsylvania cannabis legalization advocates say ‘We’re next’—but it won’t be easy

Pennsylvania cannabis legalization advocates say ‘We’re next’—but it won’t be easy

Author: Bruce Barcott

HARRISBURG, PA—A raucous crowd of advocates marked this 4/20 by urging Pennsylvania state legislators to legalize cannabis and stop arresting 20,000 people for marijuana possession every year in the Keystone State.

“Nobody deserves to be a criminal for a plant!” Jeff Riedy, Executive Director of the Lehigh Valley NORML chapter, proclaimed to a cheering crowd gathered on the steps of the state capitol in Harrisburg. “Gardening is never a crime.”


Jobs and tax money going out of state

With the state’s neighbors to the north and east—New York and New Jersey—expected to open adult-use cannabis stores in the coming year, Pennsylvania stands to lose tens of thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenue until in-state residents are allowed to grow, sell, and purchase legally.

Legalization could mean 33,000 jobs and $500 million in annual tax revenue for Pennsylvania.

According to new data released yesterday by Leafly, a fully legal Pennsylvania market could see $2.3-$3.3 billion in revenue within three to five years of opening. That translates into roughly $500 million in annual tax revenue, and support for between 32,800-47,100 legal cannabis jobs. If that market existed today, Pennsylvania would be America’s third largest cannabis industry, behind only California and Colorado.

View the full article at leafly.com