Marijuana Tax

2020 Marijuana Tax

The state of Washington collects a single 37% excise tax on the sale of recreational marijuana.

A portion of that revenue is returned to cities and counties that allow retail marijuana sales within their boundaries. It is up to the city or county to decide how to spend the tax revenue it receives from the state.

$473.9 million in marijuana taxes collected by the state in 2020

Where Did this Money Go?

The state distributes recreational marijuana tax revenue to a variety of specific public programs, following the plan outlined by the 2012 legalization measure, Initiative 502, and state Legislative direction. This includes:

  • State health care services/Medicaid
  • The state general fund
  • Licensing and enforcement efforts
  • Education and prevention programs
  • Recreational marijuana research and pesticide testing
  • City and county governments

Learn more in the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board’s 2020 Annual Report.

$463,070 was distributed to the City of Vancouver in 2020 ($15,621 less than 2019)

How Was it Spent?

The Vancouver City Council allocated this tax revenue to the Vancouver Police Department to help pay for six police officers.