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Basement Bargain Prices: Legalizing Pot Could Drop Prices by 80 Percent

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When it comes to potentially passing a law that would allow anyone over the age of 21 to legally smoke marijuana, it's hard to predict how much the state would actually benefit from a tax on the drug, according to a six-month study from the Santa Monica-based Rand Corp. But a expert notes in the San Francisco Chronicle that if "local jurisdictions tax marijuana heavily, growers might be driven back underground - again, undercutting tax revenue." The big surprise is that if legalized, the price of pot could drop as much as 80 percent, while usage could rise as much as 50 percent given how cheap the stuff is (an ounce could sell for $38, down from $300-$400). But according to an exert quoted in the Los Angeles Times, the spike in pot use may only be temporary, given that "drugs come in and out of fashion." Indeed, who didn't spend much of the 90s lost in a K-Hole? And complicating the issue is that Proposition 19 would allow each of California's 478 cities and 58 counties to decide whether to tax or ban pot. Here's one happy pot and capitalism marriage scenario via the Chronicle: A "Wine Country-style tourism trade could be a bonanza to a marijuana-growing area such as Mendocino, and the craft of making pot-infused food could thrive. Legality would also bring social acceptance, driving up use, which in turn would drive up sales and tax revenue."
· High Times With Legalized Pot? It All Depends [SF Chronicle]
· Legalization could slash the price of pot 80% [LAT]