I’m looking for a cannabis-friendly red-leaning state with no state income taxes — where should I retire on $60,000 a year? – MarketWatch

Dear MarketWatch,

I’d like to retire in a no (or low) state-income-tax state near water and a state or national park. I want red politics but with (hopefully) legal pot (medical or recreational), and weather that isn’t too cold. I’d compromise on the pot for Texas, if necessary. 

I don’t want to be in New Hampshire, Florida or Washington or too close to California. 

We’ll have a budget of about $5,000 a month and are selling a house worth $300,000-ish. I’d love a place with a college vibe and affordable food, too. One of the things that seems to be overlooked in these “where to retire” conversations is how much fresh food costs. I am vegetarian so access to fresh fruits and vegetables is super important to me.

Any ideas? 


Dear Sydney,

Only eight states don’t levy an income tax: Alaska, Florida, Nevada, South Dakota, Texas, Tennessee (sorry, forgot it joined the list on Jan. 1!) Washington and Wyoming. You don’t want Florida or Washington, and Alaska, South Dakota and Wyoming are likely “too cold.”

That leaves Nevada, a purple state where marijuana is legal, and Texas and Tennessee, red states where only medical CBD is allowed. Within Nevada, Las Vegas, Reno and Carson City may all be too close to California for your comfort.

How about red states that do have state income tax but where marijuana is legal? Only 15 states plus the District of Columbia have legalized marijuana as of early 2021 (though the changes have yet to take effect in two of them), according to pro-marijuana advocacy group Norml, and they tend to be blue. Laws of course can change.

One possible match for you is

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