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As Marijuana Business Booms, Denver Loosens Its Purse Strings

  • City seeks to commit a share of revenue to build homes
  • As legalization expands, cities eye taxes from new industry
A Swiss Startup Is Pumping Out Legal Hashish
Photographer: Stefan Wermuth/Bloomberg

As Americans grow more comfortable with legal marijuana, their governments are getting more comfortable with the cash it’s bringing in.

One of the leaders in authorizing retail marijuana sales four years ago, Denver is planning to commit a share of the tax collections to building affordable housing, an increasingly scarce commodity. That is a shift for the booming Colorado capital, which has so far only used the portion not already earmarked to cover one-time costs -- like paving roads -- amid uncertainty about how big the business would become.