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Launching Legal Pot In Nevada Shouldn't Strain State Budget

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Officials don't expect that launching recreational marijuana legalization in Nevada will strain the state's budget.

While Massachusetts lawmakers are considering tapping into their state's rainy day fund to pay for start-up costs after voters legalized recreational pot, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports Nevada could use money from its existing medical marijuana program to pay upfront costs of recreational marijuana.

The state collected $761,000 in taxes off medical marijuana in the year that ended June 30. Three-quarters of the money goes to schools and one quarter goes to administer the program.

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Start-up costs might include licensing and inspecting dispensaries.

Nevada voters recently approved Question 2, which allows adults to possess up to an ounce of marijuana effective Jan. 1.

It calls for retail shops to sell the substance by 2018.