Pennsylvania’s Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf on Tuesday called for marijuana use to be legalized, which he said could help shore up the state’s economy.
Wolf said on Twitter that he would be renewing calls on the state legislature to legalize adult-use to provide a new revenue stream as the state battles a multibillion-dollar coronavirus-related budget deficit.
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During a press conference on Tuesday, Wolf acknowledged that so far there has been no movement among Pennsylvania lawmakers to advance corresponding legislation.
“I’m here today to ask once again to focus on two particular benefits or legalization: one, the potential economic benefit that Pennsylvania would get and second, the much-needed restorative justice [related to criminalization],” Wolf said. “The growth of the adult-use cannabis industry would help provide jobs, of course, and bolster our economy – and the revenue from the industry could be used to help support Pennsylvania’s small businesses that have suffered because of the pandemic.”
Wolf’s administration pointed to revenues generated in other states, like Colorado, alleging that legalization – and taxation – has the potential to generate “billions” of dollars’ worth of revenue.
Pennsylvania is facing an estimated budget deficit of about $5 billion over two years.
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More than 10 states have legalized recreational marijuana use for adults.
Voters in four additional states will decide on legalizing marijuana use in November.
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