Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Marijuana consumers demand to pay taxes

$14 billion dollar check presented to US Treasury represents "tax and regulate" boost to economy

New York, NY: On April 15, better known as Tax Day, at 8:00 AM representatives and supporters of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), including the organization's national director Allen St. Pierre, will stand on the steps of the General Post Office in Midtown Manhattan and present a check for $14 billion to the US Treasury Department.

NORML - norml.org

The check total is an estimate of what American taxpayers spend every year to maintain marijuana prohibition. According to the report "The Budgetary Implications of Marijuana Prohibition in the United States", Americans spend some $6 billion on law enforcement costs related to enforcing marijuana laws. Taxing and regulating the production and sale of cannabis like alcohol products would reduce these costs while raising an estimated $8 billion in new tax revenue. That's according to Nobel Prize Winner Milton Friedman and over 500 other accredited economists.

"On a day when so many Americans lament having to pay state and federal income taxes, we're representing America's millions of otherwise law-abiding cannabis consumers—as well as supportive non-consumers—who're ready, willing, vocal and able to contribute this huge sum to our struggling economy, while providing truly 'green' jobs and allowing police to focus on more important priorities," says Allen St. Pierre, NORML's Executive Director. "All we ask in exchange for our $14 billion is the right to smoke our pot responsibly and in peace—just in the same way as the millions of daily consumers of alcohol products in our country."

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