Unless you want to start paying a 25% tax on legal marijuana, you should vote no. In fact, you have to stand on a street corner with a big sign that says “vote no to Proposition 119” because it’s outrageous.
Do you know what is hilarious? a long time ago when Amendment 64 was passed, creating the legal cannabis market here in Colorado, he said marijuana would be “taxed in a manner similar to alcohol,” but guess what? This little tidbit was downright ignored by our politicians (which, coincidentally, is why nobody likes politicians).
Currently, alcohol is taxed at 8.4% here in Durango, and marijuana is taxed at 20.5%, which is two and a half times higher.
Granted, I have a degree in English, so I may have a better understanding of basic definitions than politicians, but still, “two and a half times” is nowhere near “similar”, so madness must stop; which brings us to Proposal 119. If this initiative were to pass, the tax rate you pay for legal and recreational marijuana would slowly climb over a three-year period from an insane 20.5% to 25.5%. We would move even further away from the “similarity” that was supposed to exist between marijuana and liquor tax, and we would once again ask legal, adult marijuana smokers to pay more than their fair share. It’s not cool, and it’s not American, no matter which side of the aisle you sit on.
The money from this tax would go to after-school programs for disadvantaged students, and that’s the rub. It makes you look like Ebenezer Scrooge if you stand on a soapbox and demand that more money not be given to disadvantaged students, but I promise you that is not the case. If you read the fine print of this initiative, if we pass it, the state will also take $22 million from our state land trust to initially fund the bill, and that money would otherwise go to general school funding. . So we took from the children to give to the children.
See. For information, I have children. The owners of this dispensary have children. We do everything in our life for our children, and we care about children in general. But disproportionately harming our industry is not the way to help them. Just think of our underprivileged customers: should we really charge more for their cannabis to the ex-unemployed people who come here for help? What about cancer patients who come to try to stimulate their appetite, or those who try to make the horrors of chemotherapy more bearable with weed? Are they really the ones who should bear the burden of higher tax rates while family-ruining booze walks away unscathed?
And here’s the funniest part: Proponents of Proposition 119 say it would generate over $137 million a year, but that’s a lie. It would only make that much money if people continued to buy marijuana at the same rate as last year, which just won’t happen if we make it 5% more expensive. One of the reasons for this is that the illegal cannabis market here in Colorado is still alive and well, and if legal products are taxed more, illegal products will take a larger market share. It’s just simple, foolproof logic (you know, the kind your average greedy, baby-kissing politician doesn’t have).
For real, if anything you’ve just read has struck you as a little vitriolic, I apologize. It’s just that most of us in this over-regulated, over-taxed industry have become jaded. In fact, I wrote THIS article over four years ago, the last time our industry was put in the crosshairs of greed, and nothing has changed since then. Cannabis is still seen as a newly legalized and useless thing by the old guard, and whenever a financial gap is discovered, the powers that be again turn to cannabis taxes to fill the gap without even looking. other sources of income such as increased alcohol consumption. tax. It sucks, and we need your help to fight it.
So please, please, please vote “no” on proposition 119. We don’t want to charge you more than we already do just to come and buy weed. legal which is already surcharged. We want to keep things fair and legal, and we want to continue to provide you with the same affordable quality you’ve grown accustomed to at The Greenery, because we’re your best friends!