OR: Seaside Voters To Decide Fate Of Cannabis Tax Initiative

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A resolution calling for a ballot initiative this November proposing a three percent tax on the sale of marijuana products by Seaside recreational marijuana retailers was approved unanimously by the Seaside City Council at its Monday meeting. As a result, voters will have one more ballot measure to decide this fall.

Retail, not medical sales, would be subject to the tax. State law mandates local taxes may not be imposed on medical marijuana patients or caregivers. Recent legislative changes made it possible for Seaside to impose the three percent tax on retail cannabis sales within its borders.

Last fall, Seaside city councilors approved retail sales at licensed medical marijuana dispensaries. Highway 420, Cannabis Nation and Oasis Cannabis retailers are licensed within the city and regulated by the Oregon Health Authority and Oregon Liquor Control Commission.

According to the League of Oregon Cities publication “Local Government Regulation of Marijuana in Oregon,” rules amended this year could allow cities and counties to enter into intergovernmental agreements with Oregon Department of Revenue to collect the local taxes.

A consolidated regulation system may be enacted in 2017, according to the document, which was revised in May.

Oregon now charges a 25 percent state tax on retail sales of recreational marijuana from medical marijuana dispensaries. The tax will be reduced to 17 percent after July 1, 2017. Medical marijuana cardholders and caregivers will not have to pay the state tax on the retail sale of marijuana items.

Of state tax revenue from the retail sale of cannabis, 10 percent will be transferred to cities to “assist local law enforcement in performing its duties.” After July 1, 2017, revenues will be distributed proportionately based on the number of licenses issued in each city. Fifty percent of revenues will be distributed based on the number of production, processor and wholesale licenses issued in the city, and the other 50 percent will be distributed based on the number of retail licenses issued in the city.

If a city adopts an ordinance prohibiting the establishment of any registered or licensed marijuana activities, it will not be eligible to receive state marijuana tax revenues.

News Moderator: Katelyn Baker
Full Article: Seaside Voters To Decide Fate Of Cannabis Tax Initiative
Author: R.J. Marx
Contact: Seaside Signal
Photo Credit: R.J. Marx
Website: Seaside Signal