Some cannabis tax revenue is going toward programs to aid communities harmed by the war on drugs.
By Greg Bishop, The Center Square.
Illinois’s December cannabis sales broke monthly sales records with $137.9 million sold—and cannabis sales more than doubled sales over the prior 12 months.
Monthly sales totals for all of 2021 published Monday by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation showed nearly $1.4 billion sold. That’s more than double the $669 million sold in 2020.
December sales of $137.9 million topped the previous monthly record set in July 2021 with $127.8 million sold.
For the calendar year, in-state residents bought $943 million while out-of-state residents bought more than $436 million.
Taxes on legal cannabis can be up to 40 percent or more, depending on the potency of the product. Taxes collected and remitted to the comptroller for the prior calendar year total $387.7 million.
The taxes are split several ways. More than a third goes to the state’s general revenue fund. Ten percent goes to unpaid bills. Eight percent goes to law enforcement and two percent goes to public safety campaigns.
Nearly a quarter of every cannabis tax dollar goes to community groups through the Restore, Reinvest and Renew Program.
“Areas eligible for funding were identified using community-level data on gun injury, child poverty, unemployment, and state prison commitments and returns, combined with disproportionately impacted areas identified by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO),” the Pritzker administration said last month.
The state has already distributed $35 million. An additional $45 million is set to be released with details available at R3.Illinois.gov.