# New Colorado Marijuana Revenue Estimate

In Colorado, the revenue estimate for marijuana excise taxes went up.  An official 2013 legislative estimate called for \$67 million for the first full fiscal year, July 2014 to June 2015.  As of February 18, math shows that the Governor is officially expecting \$107,237,544 from those excises.  An officially reported \$117 million number, linked below, includes taxes other than excises, and excludes amounts sent to localities.

The \$67 million was simply the sum of expectations for Colorado’s 15 percent wholesale tax (\$27.5 million) and its 10 percent retail tax (\$39.5 million).  The lower-rate retail brings in more revenue because its base is larger:  the retail price is higher than the wholesale price.  (In fact, the wholesale price base has been abandoned, and converted to a weight base:  62 cents a gram for flowers, and 10 cents a gram for trim.  But that’s another story.)

The \$107,237,544 requires math.  The official report shows \$45,958,948 as the proceeds from the 15 percent wholesale tax and \$52,086,807 as the state’s 85 percent share of the 10 percent retail tax.  To that, we have to add a calculated \$9,191,789, the 15 percent share of the retail tax that goes to localities.  So the total retail tax take, state and local, is \$61,278,596.

 \$45,958,948 \$52,086,807 \$9,191,789 \$107,237,544

That \$107,237,544 is the number to compare to the previous \$67 million number.  Both cover just marijuana excise taxes.

Now \$107,237,544 is not the number that appears on the new Colorado estimate (or anywhere).  The new Colorado estimate is instead \$117,847,657.  That new total adds to the estimates for the specific marijuana taxes other amounts:  \$17,770,793 in ordinary (2.9 percent) sales taxes, \$1,962,413 in fee receipts, and \$68,696 in “Other” estimated receipts.  Omitting that calculated \$9,191,789 local share of retail taxes is how the estimate gets to \$117,847,657.

 \$17,770,793 \$52,086,807 \$45,958,948 \$1,962,413 \$68,696 \$117,847,657