California Assembly approves Excise Tax on Marijuana Cultivators

Posted by Sagar Satapathy on June 07, 2016.

In a major development, the lawmakers of California on Thursday passed a new marijuana bill to levy excise tax on marijuana cultivators in order to raise the revenue of the state. .

The new bill AB2243 was passed by a 60-12 vote in the State Assembly. It will now go to the Senate to be heard next in Senate Rules Committee.

As per the regulations of the bill, the state would levy a $9.25 per ounce of marijuana flowers, $2.75 per ounce of marijuana leaves and $1.25 per ounce of immature marijuana plants tax. Legislative analysts estimate the taxes would raise $77 million annually. The fund would be distributed for watershed enforcement, local law enforcement, environmental cleanup, and revival of Williamson Act.

Democratic Assemblyman Jim Wood of Healdsburg appreciated the development of new legislation on marijuana. “An excise tax will ensure the revenue stays in the communities where the cannabis is grown.  Our goal is to create resources to manage the environmental and public safety problems we are battling”, he said.

Some marijuana activists, however, oppose the new taxes saying them unreasonably high tax, and claiming that flower tax alone would cost the marijuana cultivators 10 percent of marijuana’s value.

Earlier this week, the Senate approved a marijuana bill SB 987 that would impose a 15 percent tax for the sale of medical marijuana to patients. Currently, local governments tax pot about 7.5 percent.

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