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Marijuana: Proposed $3.25 million Denver tax boost, $2 million Denver Health pot-ed program

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Yesterday afternoon, the Amendment 64 committee of the Denver City Council was scheduled to talk about a proposed retail marijuana tax ordinance, as well as a presentation by Denver Health for a pot-education program to be funded by the city.

How much money are we talking about? Plenty. According to two documents on view below, the target tax amount may be $3.25 million -- and expenses for the roll-out of the Denver Health program exceed $2 million.

The Amendment 64 Committee is chaired by councilman Charlie Brown, with Mary Beth Susman serving as vice chair. Other members include Chris Nevitt, Albus Brooks, Jeanne Faatz, Chris Herndon, Jeanne Robb, Robin Kneich, Paul López, Judy Montero, Debbie Ortega, Peggy Lehman and Susan Shepherd.

charlie brown photo.jpg
A64 Committee chair Charlie Brown.
The ordinance draft, created for discussion purposes, suggests setting a city tax on marijuana of 2.5 percent -- and while that would be on top of a state sales tax of 10 percent (and a state excise tax of 15 percent), it's still a more modest add-on than those being discussed by the Boulder City Council. The Boulder officials are considering a 15 percent excise and a 10 percent sales tax of their own, raising at least the possibility of weed taxes exceeding 50 percent there.

However, the draft ordinance gives the Denver council the opportunity to jack up that 2.5 percent tax to 10 percent if it's deemed necessary. Here's proposed ballot language for the November election:

"SHALL CITY TAXES BE INCREASED BY [$3.25 MILLION] ANNUALLY IN THE FIRST FULL FISCAL YEAR AND BY SUCH AMOUNTS AS ARE RAISED ANNUALLY THEREAFTER BY IMPOSING AN ADDITIONAL SALES TAX OF 2.5% ON THE SALE OF RETAIL MARIJUANA AND RETAIL MARIJUANA PRODUCTS, WITH THE TAX REVENUES BEING USED TO FUND THE ENFORCEMENT OF REGULATIONS ON THE RETAIL MARIJUANA INDUSTRY, OTHER COSTS RELATED TO ENFORCEMENT OF MARIJUANA LAWS, EDUCATION AND PUBLIC HEALTH PROGRAMS ASSOCIATED WITH MARIJUANA CONSUMPTION INCLUDING PREVENTION OF UNDERAGE CONSUMPTION, AND OTHER CITY EXPENSES, WITH THE RATE OF THE TAX BEING ALLOWED TO BE INCREASED OR DECREASED WITHOUT FURTHER VOTER APPROVAL SO LONG AS THE RATE OF TAXATION DOES NOT EXCEED 10%, AND WITH THE RESULTING TAX REVENUE BEING ALLOWED TO BE COLLECTED AND SPENT NOTWITHSTANDING ANY LIMITATIONS PROVIDED BY LAW?"
The reference above to "education and public health programs associated with marijuana consumption including prevention of underage consumption" dovetails nicely into the Denver Health proposal, prepared under the leadership of DH chief government officer (and former city councilwoman) Elbra Wedgeworth. The document suggests three main missions: "Evaluate," "Educate" and "Provide Early Treatment."

And they don't come cheap.

Continue for more about the Denver Health proposal, including the original documents.



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58 comments
WillieStortz
WillieStortz topcommenter

2.5% is not nearly high enough. 


They are over estimating the sales.

CoreyDonahue
CoreyDonahue

Pay your taxes so that money can be used to imprision cannabis users and sellers who do not pay their cannabis tax.

A64 a Cannabis Tax Act for the 21st century.

Monkey
Monkey

I can't wait to see where the DOR sets the wholesale price of weed. All of these figures are meaningless until they do that, but I have a sneaking suspicion Denver officials already know what that price will be. In a free market, weed would drop to $10/oz, in a regulated and heavily taxed market, weed should stabilize at current prices ($200-250/oz), and rise with inflation. Sorry customers, somebody's got to pay, and everyone has their had out now. 

Juan_Leg
Juan_Leg

I SAY WE BEGIN A PETITION TO GET BROWN THE FUCK OUTTA THERE !!!

I AM %100 SERIOUS & HAVE $$$ TO GET THIS GOING !!!

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

It'll take more than that just to refute the myriad LIES spewed by LYING PREVARICATING MENDACIOUS STONERS ...

... like Dilettante Robert Chase, Lyin' Brian Vicente and Mendacious Mason Tvert.



Juan_Leg
Juan_Leg

They are making this entirely too difficult !!!

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident topcommenter

Laughing at the pure idiocy: bolstering the black market.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

Many of those who most need an education as to the medical effects of cannabis work for Denver Health, and it should not cost two million dollars for them to get up to speed.  Brown and clowns' arrogant assumptions that general retail sales of cannabis to adults necessitate this payoff, and that Denver Health is qualified to educate the public about the health effects of using cannabis are both fundamentally mistaken.  We should be spending money on comprehensive scientific studies of cannabis' effects on public health (even though all indications are that they are minimal).  The last thing the retrogrades Colorado and Denver are so stupid as to keep electing want is hard evidence that there is no justification for their pretended alarm, or their prohibitive taxes.  The only proposal to study the effect of cannabis originated from the prohibitionist pigs controlling Criminal Law Issues Working Group of the Amendment 64 Task Force, and it was not motivated by any scientific or health concerns, but only the desire to amass a list of imagined harms and costs to law enforcement of legal sales of cannabis.  The Denver City Council serves as an absolute refutation of any notion that Denver is a progressive city.

Steve At Work
Steve At Work

The cartels don't charge tax but I'd rather pay double the price after tax to an American growing quality marijuana than to a Mexican thug selling dirt weed. Buy and grow responsibly.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@WillieStortz ... overestimating based upon the perpetual LIES proffered by the LYING Pot Pimps.

The REALITY is there is NO financial windfall of $$ from pot, not for the greedy pimps, not for the government. In pot-centric Boulder County the TOTAL SALES TAX revenue generated by Retail Pot during their pre-regulation peak around 2009-2010 where there were over 200! Dispensaries operating was LESS than 1/2 of 1% of overall sales taxes collected by the County.

One fucking half of one fucking percent! ... PATHETIC!


DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Sara Conrad ... that's what she said.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Monkey ... it'd be ironically hilarious if the DOR used the Greedy Big $$ Dispensary Pigs own LIES against them in setting the "wholesale price" -- i.e. the grossly inflated "costs of production" that Dispensaries declared on their official tax returns in order to minimize their net income / taxes due.


DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase

"Granting the DOR regulatory authority over retail sales of cannabis is not bad at all"
-- Robert Chase 

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Half Aspen <== racist bigot who hates Mexicans

WillieStortz
WillieStortz topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay The Dispensary Pigs can't claim product costs on their taxes,due to Federal laws,  any half brained nit wit knows that.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@barbarian.bob1 <== reading comprehension FAIL.

Donkey don't hate the plant ... just the pig-ignorant stupid stoners and know-nothing puerile pot punks ... like you.

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay @Cognitive_Dissident There's nothing "free" about the black market. it's an invitation to be persecuted for pretending to be free, and an invitation to people who break real laws (you know, don't steal, don't kill, don't commit fraud) to get in on the act where the light of day does not shine. There's no comparison at all until we remove the fascist market you love so much.

Oh, and the "el derpo" sock puppet is way too transparent.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@barbarian.bob1 "thats [sic] what the last cockscuker [sic]"

Retard FAIL!

barbarian.bob1
barbarian.bob1

@DonkeyHotay figures :cant answer a simple question.  why do donkeys hate plants> answer :they dont" only pretend donkeys with anger problems do lolol

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@barbarian.bob1 ... why do Stoners LIE SO MUCH??

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@WillieStortz = accounting FAIL!

They CAN -- and do -- claim costs of production and other business expenses  on their SEPARATE STATE Income tax form(s).


DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident ... the "black market" is the closest thing you'll ever see to a true "free market" as far as form and function.

There is only 1 (ONE) single Regulation affecting the "black market" ... that it's illegal. After that, it functions with total economic freedom for those willing to violate that single regulation.

Name any other market in the U$ economy that has 1 (ONE) single regulation forced upon it ... no taxes, no rules, no limits, no licenses, no zoning, no OSHA, no minimum wage, nothing but pure supply and demand.




DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Juan_Leg ... someone who isn't a delusional dilettante that LIES to and DECEIVES the Legislature by claiming to speak for and represent a phony "coalition" of patients that are entirely a pretentious fabrication of Robert's delusions of grandeur.

hth.

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