ILLINOIS — The state collected $52 million in the first six months of the year from taxes on recreational cannabis sales.
Since Jan. 1, when legal recreational cannabis sales began in Illinois, the state has brought in $52 million from taxes on the sale of adult-use cannabis and an additional $34.7 million from excise taxes.
“Illinois has done more to put justice and equity at the forefront of this industry than any other state in the nation, and we’re ensuring that communities that have been hurt by the war on drugs have the opportunity to participate,” Gov. J.B. Pritzker said in a statement. “Since January, over $239 million has been spent on recreational cannabis in Illinois translating to $52 million in tax revenue.”
In addition to excise taxes, the Illinois Department of Revenue collected $18 million in sales taxes that will be shared with local governments. In total, the department estimates $25.9 million will be directed to the state’s General Fund from sales and excise taxes.
The state adult-use cannabis law directs 25% of revenues collected from recreational cannabis sales to be either reinvested through the Restore, Reinvest and Renew Program in communities that have been disproportionately affected by the war on drugs by the justice system, used to address substance abuse and prevention and mental health concerns, or sent to local governments for crime prevention programs.
The Restore, Reinvest and Renew Program recently announced $31.5 million in grants available to organizations in underserved communities.
The state law also created a path to expunge criminal records.
“By expunging hundreds of thousands of cannabis-related records, reinvesting the money spent on adult-use cannabis in Illinois into communities that are suffering, and making equity a central focus of the cannabis licensure process, the administration is ensuring that no community is left out or left behind,” said Toi Hutchinson, senior advisor to the governor for cannabis control.
The Center Square – Brett Rowland