Weed-tax scholarship helps disadvantaged students go to uni
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Marijuana sales in Colorado are helping disadvantaged students fulfil their university dreams. Pueblo County in the US state – the first to legalise the recreational use of cannabis – has launched the world’s first marijuana tax-funded scholarship scheme. Pueblo County commissioner Sal Pace said: “Every kid deserves an opportunity to succeed. College debt has surpassed even credit card debt in America. Middle class families find it hard to send their kids to college, a basic cornerstone of the American Dream. We’re aiming to help alleviate that problem.” A public vote decided how the weed tax should be used, with locals deciding that of the proceeds will fund the Pueblo County Scholarship Fund, while the other half will go into a fund for community projects.
(Silvia Izquierdo/AP)Beverly Duran, from the Pueblo Hispanic Education Foundation (PHEF), said: “We have such need in our community, combined with growing tuition rates and decreased funding. Putting money behind these students and helping them navigate the financial barriers I think will be a great benefit to our community.” PHEF, which is dealing with scholarship applications, expects to award $25,000 (about £17,000) in the 2016/2017 academic year to 25 students who will receive $1,000 (about £700) each. Pueblo County is not the only area to use weed tax for good causes. The council in Aurora, Colorado, recently pledged $1.5 million (just over £1 million) each year from 2016 to 2018 to help homeless services.