As Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana program moves closer to becoming a reality, a state official sees legalizing the drug for recreational use as the solution to financial issues.
“It is clear from the states that have done this that the results are in; teen usage is down, tax revenues are up and it is simply a saner way to tackle marijuana policy,” state auditor general Eugene DePasquale said.
In his role as Auditor General, DePasquale devotes time to making sure revenue collected by the state is spent in a responsible manner. He sees regulating and taxing marijuana for recreational use as providing the state with a dependable revenue stream.
DePasquale points to a recent poll that revealed nearly 60 percent of Pennsylvania voters favor legalizing marijuana in the state. Plus, the move could have the added benefit of helping to combat the state’s opioid epidemic, he says.
“The medical community has found marijuana can help reduce the opioid addiction and in the states that have legalized marijuana, opioid addiction is down,” he said.
Last week, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said the federal government could return to a policy of strict enforcement of federal law which prohibits possession, distribution and cultivation of marijuana.
Written By: Ryan Saeler for the Butler Radio Network