Burdensome taxes/fees on cannabis could backfire

Legal recreational use of marijuana expected to triple the general fund of some municipals.

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Reuters: Over taxation on recreational marijuana will fuel black markers, pushing businesses to decamp. key California cities general expected to triple.

More than 60 local marijuana measures will appear on ballots across California in Tuesday’s election. In Monterey, a scenic county along the state’s rugged central coast, officials said new local marijuana taxes and fees, if approved, could bring in $30 million, nearly double the county’ $16 million budget deficit.

Desert Hot Springs’ current general fund is about $15 million. But city leaders project marijuana tax collections could reach $1 million next year and, eventually, climb to $50 million if all the available land gets fully built out.

Proposition 64 would impose state taxes on the cultivation and sale of marijuana. But it also allows local jurisdictions to add taxes of their own, something many cities and counties said they plan to do.

Economists warn that burdensome taxes and fees on the nascent industry could backfire, fueling the black market and pushing marijuana businesses to decamp for towns where it’s cheaper to operate. For many city and county officials across California, however, the promise of new revenue to fill budget gaps and fund services is too alluring to pass up.

Source/ By Robin Respaut\

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