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Analysts Suggest Massachusetts Cannabis Industry Could Reach $450M During First Year

Analysts from New Frontier Data project Massachusetts’ legal cannabis industry could be worth $450 million during the first year of retail sales, equating to as much as $90 million in tax revenues, according to an outline of the report by Wicked Local. By 2020, the report says the state’s industry could reach as much as $1.2 billion in sales and $240 million in taxes.

Beau Whitney, a senior economist for New Frontier, said those figures “are assuming a relatively smooth rollout of the regulatory infrastructure and assumes demand will build over time through greater participation in a regulated space, and that people will feel comfortable with cannabis in their communities.”

In July, lawmakers approved legislation revising some aspects of the voter-approved law included raising the combined local and state taxes on cannabis products from 12 to 20 percent, including allowing municipalities to impose a 3 percent tax on sales. The state Department of Revenue has estimated legal cannabis sales could be worth just $64 million during the program’s first year.

According to a report last month from the Associated Press, more than 100 Massachusetts localities have imposed moratoriums, zoning regulations, or outright bans on retail cannabis sales. The bans are mostly focused on adult-use sales rather than medical cannabis operations.

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