This has been nothing short of a transformational year for the marijuana industry. In October, Canada became the first industrialized country in the world to legalize recreational weed, opening the door to what should be billions of dollars in added annual sales once the industry has had the time to ramp up production.
We also witnessed plenty of milestones hit in the United States. The number of legalized-medical-cannabis states increased to 32, with Vermont and Michigan becoming the respective 9th and 10th states to legalize adult-use weed. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration also…
approved its very first cannabis-derived drug in June.
New Jersey aims to become the next adult-use marijuana state
As we barrel toward 2019, more legalizations in the U.S. could be on the docket, with the Garden State, New Jersey, looking to have a very good chance to legalize adult-use cannabis.
Back on Nov. 26, both the state’s Senate and Assembly overwhelmingly voted in favor of three bills that would legalize recreational weed within the state, expand the medical pot program, and speed up criminal expungements of low-level cannabis offenses. Although this vote didn’t legalize recreational marijuana, it does signal genuine support among state legislators for such a move.
Governor Phil Murphy, a Democrat, has also signaled support for legalization, although trying to hash out an exact tax rate on recreational pot sales has been perhaps the biggest stumbling block. Legislators have called for a low combined tax rate of 14%, whereas Murphy has opined that New Jersey should implement a tax rate that at least matches Nevada at 25%. The danger of placing a high tax rate on recreational sales is that it could drive on-the-fence buyers back to the black market. If legalized, New Jersey’s marijuana market could hit $850 million in annual sales by 2022.
What is clear at this point is that New Jersey’s residents, its governor, and apparently its legislators appear to favor the idea of legalizing adult-use pot. This suggests it’s only a matter of time before the Garden State goes fully green and becomes yet another opportunity for the marijuana industry and investors.
What publicly traded pot stocks might benefit if New Jersey goes green? Let’s take a closer look…
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