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Legal pot in Colorado passes $500 million in revenue

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Posted at 1:29 PM, Jul 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-20 13:59:05-04

(CNN) - The state of Colorado has accumulated $506 million in revenue thanks to recreational marijuana, according to a Denver-based company.

RELATED: More Medical Marijuana Coverage

The pro-legalization research company, VS Strategies, says the state has pulled in that amount because of taxes and fees since retail marijuana sales began in 2014.

That figure includes taxes and fees from medical marijuana, which was legalized years earlier, but the vast majority of revenue has come from recreational pot sales.

California, Maine, Massachusetts and Washington, D.C, have also legalized recreational weed, but Colorado was the first, so it has the most mature market.

"The state has now raised more than $500 million in marijuana-related revenue since adult cannabis sales began on Jan. 1, 2014," said marijuana advocate Mason Tvert.

"Essentially, the money brought in through taxes and fees would cover all of the regulatory costs related to regulating this new product, and I'm happy to announce that it has paid for itself and beyond. In fact, last year, only 12 percent of the total revenue brought in from marijuana actually went to regulating the product, so the vast majority of money being brought in through these taxes and through these fees is really paying for other positive services for the state," Brian Vicente of Vicente Sederberg LLC.

State revenue officials say they have not calculated their own total revenue summary.

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is a vocal opponent of legalizing cannabis.

Sessions has said, "good people don't smoke marijuana."

Courtesy: CNN Newsource