Bangor Township Thrives Economically Thanks to Recreational Marijuana

November 17th, 2023 Business & Industry
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In a significant economic milestone, Michigan's recent State House Fiscal Agency Report revealed that the state's revenue from recreational marijuana sales outpaced the combined earnings from beer, wine, and liquor in the last fiscal year. The burgeoning marijuana industry contributed a remarkable $266 million to the state's coffers, marking a notable shift in the state's economic landscape.

Bangor Township, a community in mid-Michigan, has emerged as a prime beneficiary of this development. Township Supervisor Glenn Rowley expressed his enthusiasm for the financial windfall brought about by recreational marijuana. "It's almost like the township was able to get a second job," Rowley remarked, highlighting the significant economic boost. The township received $627,000 in tax revenue from these sales, a substantial addition to its budget.

This influx of funds has been instrumental in enhancing local services and infrastructure. "This provided a revenue stream that allowed us to do a lot of things that you'd expect, like roads, clean drinking water, all the services that you would expect your government to provide to you. This helps fund it," Rowley explained. He also noted that Bangor Township was the second jurisdiction in Michigan to legalize recreational marijuana sales.

Despite initial skepticism, Rowley believes that perceptions are changing. He emphasized that the marijuana industry should not be seen through a stigmatized lens but rather as a professional and legitimate business sector. "It's not like a Cheech and Chong movie with a bunch of stoned people walking around like zombies," he said. "It's a business and it's professionals that are running them. And it's a great revenue stream for the municipalities."

Bangor Township currently hosts 11 recreational marijuana businesses, contributing significantly to the local economy. Including revenue from permits, the township's total earnings from the marijuana industry reached $902,000 in the last fiscal year. Rowley expressed his desire for further growth in this sector, acknowledging its role in funding community improvements like purchasing fire trucks and paving roads.

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