Taxpayers are Spending $60 For Every Cannabis Plant the DEA Eradicates in Oregon

** ADVANCE FOR WEEKEND OCT. 1-2 ** A Drug Enforcement Administration agent shoulders a bundle of marijuana plants down a steep slope after working with other law enforcement officers to clear a patch of the plant from national forest land near Entiant, Wash., Sept. 20, 2005. Police confiscated 465 marijuana plants at the so-called "garden," a small find compared to the thousands of other plants confiscated on some other busts in the area. The illegal marijuana growing operations are wreaking havoc on counties with huge tracts of open space and few resources to tackle them. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
(AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Taxpayers spent nearly a million dollars in 2014 eradicating just over 16,000 cannabis plants in Oregon. This comes to $60 per plant.

According to DEA data, a total of 16,067 cannabis plants were removed from Oregon land in 2014 as part of the administration’s Cannabis Eradication Program. This cost taxpayers $960,000.

For 2015, over $750,000 has been budgeted for cannabis eradication, a lower number than the year prior, but still incredibly high for a state that legalized the possession, cultivation and distribution of cannabis this past November. This $750,000 represents about 4% of the total budget for the DEA’s Cannabis Eradication Program, which costs around $18 million.

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