Marijuana Tax Provides Scholarships To 600 Students

A scholarship program funded by marijuana is sending hundreds of students to college this year.

The majority of Pueblo County’s scholarship fund is provided by an excise tax levied on wholesale transfers of marijuana from distributors to pot shops. This year, $750,000 was raised. That’s is allowing the fund to provide money to 600 students, according to the Pueblo Chieftain.

This is exciting not only for the hopeful students but the prospects of the scholarship’s future, as this is a much higher number than the year prior. The good news is that it’s over a third more than the previous year’s tax haul. The bad news is that previous number was $420,000, which for comedy’s sake seems so much more appropriate.

This year 210 students received $2000 scholarships from the Pueblo County Scholarship Initiative awarding a total of $420,000 in scholarships for the 2017-18 academic year, the second year of the cannabis tax-funded scholarship award, the first year of full funding for the scholarship. Horton-Symons is studying mechatronic engineering at Colorado State University-Pueblo. (Photo by Andy Cross/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
“We want to try to ensure that the future of Pueblo is bright,” said Sal Pace, Pueblo County Commissioner, to The Pueblo Chieftain.

In order to qualify, students have to graduate from a Pueblo County high school and apply to a post-secondary institution in Pueblo County, either Colorado State University-Pueblo or Pueblo Community College. On average, the number of students transitioning from one Pueblo school to another is between 300 and 400 kids. This year’s pot haul is 600, which suggests there are more people smoking up than needed to send the appropriate amount of these kids to school. The money will also be used for the continuing studies of previous scholarship recipients.