New figures from the Colorado Department of Revenue show that recreational marijuana sales continued to climb in August, the most recent month for which data are available. Recreational sales totaled approximately $34.1 million in August, up from $29.3 million the previous month. Medical marijuana also jumped sharply in August, after several months of flat or declining sales. Medical sales figures were just under the recreational total, at $33.4 million. Total tax revenues from medical and recreational marijuana continue to edge upward. The state took in about $7.5 million in revenues from both markets in August, or about $45 million year-to-date. As of August, 55 percent of recreational marijuana tax revenues were collected outside Denver County. With sales starting in Aurora this month, these numbers are likely to continue to climb.
A new report says Cylvia Hayes, fiancée of Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber, partnered to buy land intended for an illegal marijuana growing operation in 1997. KOIN-TV reported late Monday that Hayes partnered with a man to buy the $245,000 property in Washington state using a $15,000 down payment in November of that year. The man who sold the couple the land told the station that Hayes and her partner soon stopped making payments, and records showed that Hayes gave up her interest in the property in April 1998. She moved to Oregon three months later. Hayes said she was never financially involved in the marijuana grow, and shortly after moving there “began to make plans to get away. Hayes got engaged over the summer to Kitzhaber, the Democratic governor who is seeking a fourth term in next month’s election. Recently, Kitzhaber openly opposed Measure 91, the initiative to legalize marijuana in Oregon, but called legalization “inevitable”.
Anaheim, California, is literally pulling the plug on medical marijuana dispensaries that keep popping up despite a law forbidding the businesses. Nine shops closed last month and eight others will likely shut down by the end of the week, Anaheim spokeswoman Ruth Ruiz said. Another 11 will soon be ordered to close or lose their water and power. State voters legalized medical marijuana 20 years ago, but the California Supreme Court ruled last year that cities can choose to forbid dispensaries. Anaheim banned the shops but that hasn’t kept them from doing business. Dispensaries can face criminal charges and fines up to $1,000 a day for operating in the city.
Central Seattle’s only pot store, Uncle Ike’s sold $13,736 of marijuana per day in the first week of sales. Uncle Ike’s, the first I-502 retailer to operate in Central Seattle within wafting distance of Capitol Hill started things off with a bang, netting nearly $17,000 in marijuana sales on its September 30th launch day. The rest of the week didn’t fade generating an average take of $13,736 per day The tax man is smiling, too. With a quarter of sales headed to Olympia, Ike’s is generating $3,500 in excise tax per day. Also well pleased are the I-502 growers and processors — based on state totals, those businesses are claiming around 49% of Washington’s retail revenue to secure their product. While the totals for Ike’s seem pretty incredible, they’re not far off what the old state liquor stores in the area reportedly generated.
Minnesota Vikings star running back Adrian Peterson could be facing a week in jail after allegedly admitting last week to smoking marijuana. The judge in Peterson’s case, Kelly Case, told an audience last year that he gives a one-week jail sentence to those who test positive in their first court-administered drug exams. According to court records, Peterson admitted last week to smoking a “little weed” – a confession he made while submitting to a drug test in Montgomery County, Texas. Based on Peterson’s alleged confession, the Montgomery County District Attorney’s office wants Peterson arrested and his $15,000 bond revoked. It’s up to the judge whether to grant that request. The question is whether Case will get to make that decision – or any others related to Peterson’s felony child abuse case.
Denver police have warned parents to beware tricks rolled inside Halloween treats this year: marijuana-infused candy. The Denver police department posted a YouTube video on Monday that shows how difficult it is to tell ordinary candy apart from knock-off candy that edible marijuana manufacturers buy in bulk and spray with a hibiscus hash oil. Patrick Johnson, proprietor of Urban Dispensary, one of several marijuana retailers that have cropped up across the state since the substance was legalized for recreational use last year, recommends parents trash any candy that isn’t sealed in a recognizable, brand-name wrapper. That’s actually good advice in any state.