Drug Law

Oakland Taxes Marijuana to Bridge City's Budget Gap

| by Marijuana Policy Project

Yesterday, voters in Oakland, California overwhelmingly approved a proposal, backed by the city’s medical marijuana community, that will create a new local sales tax for marijuana. The initiative, “Measure F,” was one of four budget-related measures in a vote-by-mail special election called by a city faced with a projected budget deficit of $83 million.

Medical marijuana collectives teamed up with city officials to propose the new tax, set at 1.8% of gross sales. The tax is expected to generate close to $300,000 for the city next year.

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It’s not every day that an industry stands up and says “tax us more.” MPP commends Oakland’s four medical marijuana collectives for stepping up to the plate and helping the bridge the city’s budget gap.

This is the first time a municipality has levied a special tax on marijuana. For now, the tax will only apply to medical marijuana collectives, but once adult marijuana use is legal in California, it will apply to all sales.

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A similar movement to tax medical marijuana sales is also underway in Los Angeles.