On Tuesday, the department said the state collected $897,082 in marijuana taxes during February, the latest month for which figures are available. That’s down from $1.04 million in January, which was a record-setting month and the first time tax proceeds topped $1 million.
The drop is likely a temporary one, the department indicated. Preliminary figures show March was likely another million-dollar month, though March collections will not be finalized until the first day of May.
Furthermore, the number of taxpayers grew in February, even though tax collections dropped. The number of marijuana taxpayers has grown every month since the state’s first legal retail sales in October 2016.
That may be a sign the industry is still growing and has not yet matched supply with in-state demand.
The tax is paid at the wholesale level, when marijuana is transferred from a farm to a retail store or processor.
Since the first retail sales began, the state has collected $8.25 million in excise taxes and more than $1 million in fees.
Eight hundred and eighty pounds of bud/flower were sold in February, and 806 pounds of other plant parts and trim were transferred in the same month.
Anchorage and Fairbanks each have 17 taxpaying marijuana farms; Wasilla has six, North Pole and Soldotna have five; Juneau and Kasilof have four.
• Contact reporter James Brooks at firstname.lastname@example.org or 523-2258.