NM to subsidize recreational marijuana businesses

As previously reported by the Piñon Post, the Democrats’ far-left bill they rammed through during the 2021 Special Session of the Legislature would come to an extreme cost to New Mexicans, who would be forced to subsidize marijuana businesses.

At the time, we reported:

…The upfront cost for implementing the marijuana industry, according to the previous 2021 session’s fiscal impact report, was $659,400 in 2022. However, the newly resurrected pot bill in this current legislative session paints a wildly different picture, forcing the state to delve out millions of dollars in taxpayer funds to prop up Big Pot.

The current bill introduced this special session calls for $1.7 million to the Regulation and Licensing Department to “administer” the bill, $750,000 to the Department of Public Safety for “drug recognition expert field certification for law enforcement,” $4 million to the Taxation and Revenue Department for expenditures in the 2021 and 2022 fiscal years, $500,000 to the Administrative Office of the Courts to help address with expungement of records, among other costs.

Just on face-value, the taxpayers of New Mexico would be on the hook for nearly $7 million to implement this costly industry, which was promised to be revenue-generating. 

However, according to the previous fiscal impact report for the bill that died in the first legislative session of 2021, by the fiscal year 2024, the flailing industry would only produce at most $15 million in net revenue to the state, which, if current spending levels remain, would only amount to 0.204% of the funds needed to fund the government. 

At the time, Rep. Stefani Lord (R-Bernalillo, Sandoval, and Santa Fe) was not pleased with the Democrats’ proposal, writing on Facebook, “We’ve been told marijuana will be revenue positive but now, in the middle of Special Session (that has been called in the middle of a Holiday week), we learn last-minute that the state will subsidize the marijuana industry with millions of taxpayer dollars. This is far from open transparent government!” 

Now, a legislative committee has approved subsidizing pot businesses, with the Regulation and Licensing Department’s proposal to have New Mexico taxpayers fund these businesses via “loans” at $250,000 apiece. These loans would have extremely competitive two percent and three percent interest rates. 

“The New Mexico Finance Authority is planning for a $5 million line of credit for cannabis entrepreneurs, with [an] average loan size of about $100,000. The application process is expected to open in February,” according to the Associated Press.

“Loans would be available to qualified cannabis ‘microbusinesses’ that are licensed to cultivate and sell marijuana from up to 200 plants at a single location, operating much like a craft winery or brewery,” the report notes.

Many legislators who voted for the extreme recreational marijuana bill took large sums from the Big Pot lobby. Scandal-ridden alleged serial groper Gov. Lujan Grisham, who demanded the bill be passed and signed into law, has taken tens of thousands of dollars from the industry in campaign cash.

According to the most recently filed campaign finance report from Lujan Grisham, former Bernalillo County Sheriff Darren White who owns the marijuana business PurLife gave her $10,000, $10,400, $10,400, and $10,400 in four apparently separate payments.

4 thoughts on “NM to subsidize recreational marijuana businesses”

  1. The New Mexico government and the crooks and criminals in Santa Fe make me absolutely sick!!! How long are we going to put up with these thieves, cheats, and liars???

  2. This whole idea that recreations pot is going to fix all the problems in NM is absurd. In CO there is a huge push back from illegal pot dealers. What do you think they will just go away when the state is selling pot for $250 dollars an ounce. This will not end well…

  3. Legal pot was as dumb as gambling bills they past years ago. “If passed it will do so much for our states economy and boost our standings, ETC. What crap!!! It always ends this way! Wake up and sober up!!!

  4. Those politicians love the “ bait and switch “ approach to scamming the public. This is just another way to repay their “donors” . In a sane society they would be called what they really are bribes. It seems that corruption is the grease that runs government these days. There should be no such “ profession “ as career politician . Just see where it’s gotten us up to this point . Until we have term limits and paper ballots and people with some integrity were stuck with rot and corruption.

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