Legal adult marijuana sales will begin in Nevada on Saturday, making it the fifth state in U.S. where legal marijuana sales are taking place.
Beginning at 12:01 a.m. PT, those in Nevada who are 21 and older will be able to purchase up to one ounce of marijuana or one-eighth of an ounce of marijuana-infused edibles or concentrates from licensed marijuana retail outlets. Retail marijuana sales will be subject to a 10 percent sales tax, which state officials estimate will generate more than $60 million in the first two years.
“The marijuana prohibition era is finally coming to an end in Nevada,” says Mason Tvert, director of communications for the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP), which backed Question 2, the initiative to regulate marijuana like alcohol that was approved by approximately 54.5 percent of Nevada voters in November.
“Adults will now be able to purchase marijuana similarly to how they purchase alcohol, from regulated businesses rather than criminals in the illegal market,” Tvert said. “Nevadans voted for safer communities, new tax revenue, and a more sensible marijuana policy. That is exactly what they are going to get.”
Question 2 required the state to initiate adult sales by January 1, 2018, but the Nevada Tax Commission adopted temporary regulations allowing sales to begin six months earlier through existing licensed medical marijuana outlets. Marijuana possession has been legal for adults 21 and older since Question 2 took effect on January 1, 2017.
Nevada is one of eight states that have enacted laws to legalize, regulate, and tax marijuana for adult use. Regulated adult marijuana sales are currently taking place in Alaska, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington, and they are expected to commence next year in California, Maine, and Massachusetts. A petition drive to place a similar proposal on the November 2018 ballot is currently underway in Michigan.
“Legal marijuana sales in Nevada are going to accelerate growth in public support for ending marijuana prohibition,” Tvert said. “Tens of millions of visitors per year from all over the U.S. and around the world will see firsthand that regulating marijuana works. What happens in Vegas will stay in Vegas, but what is learned about marijuana in Vegas will be shared with everyone back home.”