News Culture

Michigan Gov. Says Everyone Would Need to Spend $2,500 on Marijuana Annually to Fix Roads

At that level, Governor Gretchen Whitmer says, "no one is going to care about the damn roads."

Citizens across the United States have forever been pleading their case for the legalization of recreational marijuana—for the greater good, of course. Activists make the point that the added tax revenue could help to benefit government-controlled sectors such as education and infrastructure, but as Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer points out, it’d take a whole lot of toking up to pay for the latter. According to the politician, “Every man, woman, and child would have to smoke about $2,500 worth of marijuana per year to fix our roads.”

While that figure may not seem insurmountable to some, the fact that every citizen—pro-weed or not—would need to match their annual property tax numbers in pot spending makes it a hard sell. This is speaking specifically in regards to those who live in Michigan, a state of nearly 10 million people.

Whitmer, a newly elected Democrat who campaigned with the slogan “Fix the Damn Roads,” explained at Thursday’s Mackinac Policy Conference that, with the necessary amount of scratch to be spent on Mary Jane, “…no one is going to care about the damn roads.”

Local outlet Metro Times did a bit of calculating itself and, according to the paper staff’s math, Whitmer’s estimation was actually on the low side. Per a recent Metro Times article, Michigan’s proposed 10 percent tax on marijuana transactions would only bring in $875 million based on $2,500 in sales per citizen; that’s because just 35 percent of the gathered tax dollars would be allocated to infrastructure. In that case, should Michigan keep that rule of thumb intact, those old enough to purchase pot (21 years old and over) would have to spend $10,000 annually to supply the $2.5 billion needed to fix Michigan’s roads.

Should marijuana users decide to keep up their fight to legalize the substance, which they will, it looks like they’ll need to take a different approach to lobbying those at the Capitol.

h/t: Car and Driver