CO v. WA Opinions

February 1, 2016 § Leave a comment

Follow Colorado not Washington

Tax by weight

Allow local option for taxes


Follow Washington not Colorado

Apply excise taxes equally to all cannabis, medical or not

Wait on home grows


Wanting collectable taxes, and trying to avoid traps and learn from experience.

Tax rules for campaigns — Soltani

January 28, 2016 § Leave a comment

For many of us tax policy people who have seen tax laws made, campaign finance reform is a sore spot, since special interests donate to politicians and get favorable tax rules.

My friend Abdi Soltani, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California, whom I met when we were on the California Blue Ribbon Commission on marijuana legalization, has been thinking about campaign finance reform. He has an article, worth reading in its entirety, containing six ways to use tax rules to address the campaign finance problem.  Here are excerpts: « Read the rest of this entry »

Los Angeles Democratic Party

January 27, 2016 § Leave a comment

Cannabis revenue is a mainstream topic in California.  I was a speaker at an event sponsored by the L.A. Democratic Party.Panelist

3.5% tax yields $8 per person

January 20, 2016 § Leave a comment

I’m looking at how California localities might tax cannabis – both medical and eventual adult use – in connection with a panel appearance coming up.

How much might they collect?

In 2014, the City of Denver collected about $8 per man, woman, and child from its 3.5 percent tax on recreational marijuana.

Here’s how I get that number. « Read the rest of this entry »

RICO attacks on private marijuana sellers

January 12, 2016 § Leave a comment

Thanks to Joel Warner of the International Business Times for quoting me:

While some legal experts questioned whether the [RICO] lawsuit [that settled in Colorado] would have held up in court, the fact that it did so much damage not just to a marijuana enterprise but others who did business with it long before the judge ruled on it means RICO lawsuits could be a grave danger for the industry. Why would anyone want to be affiliated with a marijuana operation if it means they could be sued for organized crime? “RICO is the big deal here,” said Pat Oglesby, a tax attorney who studies marijuana at the Center for New Revenue in North Carolina. “The threat of being sued for that kind of tangential involvement with marijuana commerce could be paralyzing. These are probably not frivolous lawsuits that would allow the defendants to sue the plaintiff for damages for abuse of process.” Here is a more complete statement: « Read the rest of this entry »

State marijuana businesses are immune from RICO

January 5, 2016 § Leave a comment

My friend University of Denver Law Professor Sam Kamin, who co-chaired the Regulatory and Tax Structure Working Group of the California Blue Ribbon Commission on marijuana legalization with me, is to thank for whatever understanding I have of RICO here. Still, Sam does not necessarily agree with anything I write.

Sam points out that RICO, the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, poses a huge threat to private marijuana businesses. A Colorado case just settled out of court, with the defendant marijuana business shutting down, and defendants paying $70,000 to plaintiffs.  Another suit is pending. « Read the rest of this entry »

Colorado wholesale marijuana prices aren’t dropping

December 31, 2015 § Leave a comment

In Colorado, wholesale marijuana prices are not dropping yet. The latest official data shows bud prices nearly flat over time, but trim prices going up. New official “average market rates” (AMR) – wholesale prices – are here:

AMR Prior to December 31, 2014 AMR as of January 1, 2015 AMR as of July 1, 2015 AMR that will be effective on January 1, 2016
Flower Rate ($/lb) $1876 $2007 $1868 $1948
Trim Rate ($/lb) $296 $364 $370 $464
Immature Plant Rate ($/EA) $9 $9 $8 $9 « Read the rest of this entry »


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