Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf and Lt. Gov. John Fetterman called on the state General Assembly to legalize marijuana on Thursday, arguing that taxes levied on commercial cannabis sales could help the state recover from the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Wolf initially outlined his recreational marijuana legalization plan in a legislative agenda released last week.
“Legalization of adult-use cannabis will provide a new revenue stream to direct toward economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, enabling additional funding for grants for historically disadvantaged businesses. Legalization will also create more outlets for important restorative justice programs in the commonwealth,” Wolf’s office said in a statement.
Fetterman noted that money is already being spent on cannabis in Pennsylvania but none of it is going to the state in the form of taxes.
“It’s going into the pockets of the drug cartels, there’s a thriving cannabis market here in Pennsylvania already,” he said. “The problem is it’s unregulated, it’s illegal, and it’s underground, and none of those revenues are going into our treasuries. So, you tell me if we’re facing a $3.5 billion deficit and we have the opportunity to create a never-ending revenue stream in perpetuity.”
Wolf Makes Legalization A Legislative Priority