Jason Lander

Two More California Cities Sending Cannabis Tax Question to Voters  

Two more California municipalities have proposed ballot measures to tax cannabis if  state voters decide to legalize recreational cannabis by passing Proposition 64 in November.

According to an East Bay Times report, city legislators in Hayward and San Leandro both passed measures last week that would put the question to voters, seeking to collect the potential revenue as soon as possible.

During its July 19 meeting, Hayward’s City Council unanimously voted in favor of their ballot question, which, if passed, would add a 15 percent tax on gross sales for medical and recreational cannabis sales, cultivation, manufacturing, distribution and business-to-business transactions – none of which are permitted under current city law.

The San Leandro City Council proposal, which was also unanimously approved, would impose an annual tax of 10 percent for every $1,000 of gross receipts.

Deputy City Manager Eric Englebart said officials don’t necessarily envision the 10 percent rate being rolled out initially, pointing to the cities of San Jose and Santa Cruz, who have similar measures but currently only impose a 7 percent rate. At a rate of 5 to 7 percent, the tax could still generate $500,000 annually, he said.

During the July 18 meeting, San Leandro lawmakers also issued the city’s second medical cannabis dispensary permit to the Davis Street Wellness Center by a 5-2 vote.

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