Waldport City Manager: Tax on marijuana likely to surface when recreation status succeeds – not on medical
If any Oregon cities or counties expect to collect taxes on the sale of marijuana, it’s not likely to come from medical marijuana because it’s deemed a medicine. There’s no broadly applied special taxes on medicine in Oregon. Where the tax revenues will likely come is on recreational marijuana – something akin to a tax on liquor, wine or beer. That was the observation that Waldport City Manager Kerry Kemp gave his city council this week after returning from a marijuana summit for local governments the week before. Kemp didn’t offer any suggestions as to what form or how much such a tax might yield for the city. Mayor Susan Woodruff suggested that the state could easily levy a tax much like the Oregon Liquor Control Commission levies on alcoholic beverages and simply subvent back a share of those revenues to each city or county. All of this, of course, depends on whether voters approve of recreational marijuana at the upcoming November election. Polls indicate that it’s quite likely voters will do just that.
Kemp also commented to his council that local medical marijuana control options, not included in state law, are likely to be more specific on such things as what days of the week, and hours of the day, that medical marijuana dispensaries are allowed to be open.
Kemp told his council that he expects to have some tentative medical marijuana dispensary regulations ready for council review within a few weeks.
The only Lincoln county areas that are still under a complete moratorium
for dispensaries are the cities of Newport and Depoe Bay and in the unincorporated parts of Lincoln County – those areas not specifically inside any city limits. Those jurisdictions have until May 1st of next year to adopt their local regulations. After May 1st, 2015, all of Oregon is open to medical marijuana dispensing, regulated by state statute and local ordinances.