A new report by Oregon Office of Economic Analysis finds marijuana sales are strongest along Oregon’s border with Idaho – a state where recreational marijuana is not legal. It is unsusprising to find that in neighboring states Oregon and Washington (where recreational use of the substance is legal), sales along the Idaho border are much higher than within each of those states.
According to oregon.gov research, about 75% of Oregon sales and more like 35% of Washington sales in counties along the Idaho border appear due to the border effect itself and not local socio-economic conditions. Furthermore, and in things you cannot make up, Oregon sales per adult along the Idaho border are 420% the statewide average.
Josh Lehner of the Oregon Office of Economic Analysis, wrote: “The sales in counties along the Idaho border were much stronger than I anticipated. Obviously recreational marijuana is not legal in Idaho, but even after throwing the data into a rough border tax model that accounts for incomes, number of retailers, tax rates and the like, there remains a huge border effect.”
The “border effect” is a term used to describe the occurrence of residents traveling to a state nearby in order to benefit from regulations that differ between two neighboring states. Another example of this is residents in Southwest Washintgon that travel to Oregon to purchase products without sales tax.
Supporters of recreational marijuana use are gathering signatures to have it legalized in Idaho and Lehner has predicted that the sales in Oregon will continue to grow about 80% over the next decade.