While California has found itself in a mound of debt within the past year, the only logical solution on many peoples’ minds is to increase the taxes on medical marijuana. With the increased debate over this measure occurring over the past few months, last week saw the overwhelming support leading to the approval of the tax increase.
Measure F received nearly 80 percent of the vote, which many consider a significant step in the overall legitimization of the cannabis industry. This tax increases the rate up by 15 percent amidst the ongoing conflict between federal and state authorities.
Proposition 215 passed in 1996, thereby allowing those with prescriptions to purchase medical marijuana for their ailments. However, since federal authorities do not recognize the state law, there have been many clashes between state and federal authorities; the recent remarks from Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr., however, have revealed that those abiding by state law will no longer be a target by federal agents.
The many recent announcements within the medical marijuana industry have been a cause for joy for many who use the drug to relieve themselves of pain. California especially has felt the brunt of the economic state of the country, and the passing of this bill as well as the assurance of the Attorney General have helped to relieve the state of some of the debt it is currently in. Currently, dispensaries pay about $18 million a year in sales tax, with this number to increase 15 percent after Measure F.
The economy has affected many states around the country, with many seeking alternate routes in which to generate income for their state. This new creativity is a must have in California, which is currently in a $26 billion budget crisis. In Oakland itself, this new measure is expected to increase the taxes on medical marijuana by about $300,000, as the rate is now $18 per $1,000 worth of goods sold.
While many congressional leaders are pushing to present a bill that will legalize personal use of the drug, this has yet to go into effect. While this will force many to pay higher taxes on the drugs, it will overall reduce the amount of debt the state is currently in, which is an option many citizens are now considering in order to curb their ever increasing budget hole.
This post was contributed by Jill Gordon, who writes about the online nursing schools. She welcomes your feedback at Jill.Gordon25@ yahoo.com
Do you think medical marijuana taxes should be increased in California?