Colorado sells more than $1 billion of marijuana in 2016

Agriculture regulators from seven different states and Guam tour a Denver marijuana growing warehouse on a tour organized by the Colorado Department of Agriculture in Denver. The department is opening up its marijuana knowledge to other states and encouraging them to plan now for the possibility of regulating farmers growing a plant that violates federal law. Enlargephoto

Kristen Wyatt/Associated Press

Agriculture regulators from seven different states and Guam tour a Denver marijuana growing warehouse on a tour organized by the Colorado Department of Agriculture in Denver. The department is opening up its marijuana knowledge to other states and encouraging them to plan now for the possibility of regulating farmers growing a plant that violates federal law.

DENVER – Newly released state figures show Colorado’s marijuana dispensaries sold $1.3 billion worth of recreational and medical pot in 2016.

The Denver Post reports that the Colorado Department of Revenue released tax data Thursday showing the third consecutive year for growth since the state legalized recreational marijuana sales.

Last year’s total pot sales were up from about $996 million in 2015 and $699 million the previous year.

According to the 2016 data, recreational marijuana accounted for $875 million of the sales total.

Medical marijuana accounted for $438 million of the $1.3 billion total.

Colorado brought in close to $200 million in tax and fees revenue last year.

Marijuana tax revenue helps fund school construction projects and goes toward other areas such as public health and law enforcement.