Contact Us

Would Legal Marijuana Help NJ’s Economy? [AUDIO]

Last week, we told you how state Sen. Nick Scutari (D-Linden) is working on a measure that would legalize marijuana.

David McNew, Getty Images

Supporters believe the idea makes too much economic sense to ignore.

“It would mean we would stop arresting more than 22,000 people a year for possession of pot, and that could save us up to hundreds of millions of dollars a year in public safety budget money,” said Chris Goldstein, spokesman for the New Jersey chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws.

Goldstein believes legalizing pot would also generate hundreds of millions of dollars in new, yearly tax revenues.

“That’s money that goes right back to our fire departments, our police departments and our townships right away,” Goldstein said. “In Colorado, where marijuana just became legal, more than $40 million in marijuana tax revenue is being funneled back to the school system, and I’m sure here in the state of New Jersey, a state of more than 9 million people, we could see that type of revenue come back to our schools as well if that’s where we choose to put the money.”

He also said the theory that marijuana is a gateway drug to other, more dangerous substances has proven to be untrue.

“Marijuana doesn’t fuel violent behavior, and even drivers who are somewhat intoxicated by marijuana aren’t nearly as disabled of a driver as somebody who has had too many beers in one evening,” Goldstein said. “With a regulated system, if we legalize marijuana we can create rules for who is using it, and when people do get caught driving behind the wheel and if they’re intoxicated, we’ll have a good system to evaluate that and deal with it.”

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Best of WOBM

Recommended For You

Best of the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for WOBM Listener Club quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive WOBM Listener Club contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.