Nevada rec marijuana program receives $870K in seed money

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Nevada lawmakers approved a seed loan of about $871,000 to kick-start the state’s new recreational marijuana program under the department of taxation.

Nevada’s Interim Finance Committee, composed of lawmakers from both houses of the state legislature, extended the funding, the Reno Gazette-Journal reported.

The taxation department must iron out the details in the legislation to legalize recreational marijuana before any sales can take place. According to the Reno Gazette-Journal, the department wants to establish by July:

  • Licensing procedures for MJ businesses ranging from growers to retailers
  • Qualifications for licensing, security, packaging, labeling and testing
  • Rules for oversight and enforcement of cannabis businesses and licenses
  • Procedures for collecting taxes, fees and penalties

The money will be used to get the program up and running from Feb. 1 until the end of the fiscal year on June 30, according to the Gazette-Journal. At that time, Nevada’s governor has proposed a $1.9 million annual budget for the program during the 2018 fiscal year as well as the same amount for the following year.

The Gazette-Journal reports that the majority of the loan will be used for software programming and the department will pay back the loan with revenue from the 15% wholesale tax on marijuana and licensing fees.

Tax revenue may amount to as much as $12.7 million in the first year, as well as some $4.4 million from fees, according to the state finance office, the Gazette-Journal reported.