Today is April 20th or 4/20, typically known as “Weed Day.” While it has changed overtime with states legalizing recreational pot, there still is an evident divide in Washington even five years later.
“Western Washington, say the city of Seattle and others its embraced, they’d like to have more stores and more sales, whereas in the Eastern part of the state and other parts really, there are more bans and moratoriums that still don’t allow retail stores,” says Brian Smith with the Washington Liquor and Cannabis Board.
Nationwide a recent Yahoo News/Marist poll, Weed and the American Family, found nearly 83% of Americans are behind legalizing medical marijuana and that a majority of Americans, 56% “think marijuana use is socially acceptable.”
Smith adds there is no argument marijuana financially impacts Washington, generating $2 billion in sales and $500 million in revenue for the state since becoming legal. Smith says it is estimated $1.5 billion will be raised in the next few years total. Smith says every year, stores increase revenue, with about $5 million in sales per day in average daily sales.
500 licensed shops have also opened since I-502 passed in 2012, nearly hitting the legal limit set up by the state at 556.