Tourism is also a factor. New Mexico’s proximity to Texas and Mexico – especially El Paso and Juárez – would expand the market for marijuana sales to out-of-state visitors, the task force was told. Texas isn’t expected to legalize marijuana anytime soon, and pot’s legal status in Mexico is complicated. James Girard, a member of the task force and an economist for the state Taxation and Revenue Department, said the large number of people who live in Texas and Mexico – but near the New Mexico line – would create a “multiplier effect” that should be considered if marijuana is legalized. “It’s like tripling our population,” Girard said. “No other state that’s legalized has been in a percentage situation like that.” O’Donnell said that if legalization is approved, New Mexico policymakers should consider how to tap into the Texas market without violating interstate commerce laws and while maintaining health and safety protections.