Groundswell for local marijuana taxes in California

Drug Policy Forum of California provides these results of local California ballot measures, where it looks like every stand-alone marijuana tax increase passed.  CORRECTION:   The town of Colfax voted 63% for a tax measure that required a 2/3 majority.  That’s the only loser.

Beyond percentage of price, tax bases include:
Canopy, with different rates for indoor, outdoor, and sometimes mixed light.
Weight, with different rates for bud and trim.

Some remembered indexing. One phases out canopy taxes when the State sets up a weighing program.


Here’s the story, quoted from the Drug Policy Forum of California:


AdelantoMeasure R would impose an excise tax of up to 5% on all types of commercial marijuana activities. PASSED 67-33%

Avalon – Measure X would permit up to two medical marijuana dispensaries, and permit the delivery, cultivation, manufacture and processing of medical marijuana products, subject to a $10,000 annual license tax and a 12% transaction fee/tax on each individual medical marijuana sale. FAILED 36-64%.

Butte County – Measure L would permit commercial cannabis cultivation, distribution, manufacturing and transporatation in most zones, while prohibiting outdoor cultivation in residential zones and establishing an exemption for personal cultivation of up to 100 square feet, and collective cultivation of up to 500 square feet. Read more. FAILED 42.5-57.5%.

Calaveras CountyMeasure C would impose a $2/square foot commercial cannabis tax on outdoor/mixed light cultivation until the state establishes a track and trace program, at which point the tax will be $45/pound of dry weight trim and $10 per pound of dry weight trim; and $5/sq ft. on indoor cultivation until a track-and-trace program is implemented, at which time the tax will be $70/lb. of bud and $15/lb. of trim; and a 7% on gross proceeds from manufacturing or retail medicinal or legal cannabis. Would require legal water source and compliance with regulations issued by the Water Quality Control Board, Fish and Wildlife, etc. PASSED 67-33%.

Measure D would license and zone for commercial indoor, outdoor, and mixed light cultivation, plus nurseries and personal use/caregiver grows. FAILED 46-54%.

Carson – Measure KK would enact a tax $25 per square foot of space utilized for cultivation and 18% of gross proceeds. PASSED 63.5-36.5%

Cathedral City – Cathedral City voters will consider Measure P asking if they want to expand the tax to all legal cannabis businesses at a rate of “$25 per square foot of cultivation space, and $1 for every gram of cannabis concentrate and every unit of cannabis-infused product,” in order to fund municipal services including police and fire services and the library. Read more. PASSED76-24%.

Cloverdale (Sonoma Co) – Voters will be asked whether to approve Measure P a tax of up to 10 percent on gross sales of marijuana businesses that could be allowed in the city in the future. PASSED 74-26%

Coachella – Coachella’s Measure II proposes a maximum 6 percent tax on a business’ gross receipts and $15 per square foot of cultivation and manufacturing space every quarter. If retail spaces are approved in the future, they would be subject to a gross receipts tax and could bring in millions more to the city. Read more. PASSED 81.5-18.5%.

Coalinga Measure G – Authorize, Regulate and Tax a Single Dispensary PASSED 51.5- 48.5%Measure E: Marijuana Facility Tax Measure PASSED 60-40%

ColfaxMeasure H asks: Shall the City of Colfax adopt an ordinance which allows and regulates marijuana dispensaries, cultivation, delivery and use, and imposes a sales tax of up to 15% on the sale of all marijuana products? FAILED with 63% of vote – needed 2/3 majority

Costa MesaMeasure V would allow up to eight shops FAILED 35-65%. Measure W would allow for four. FAILED 39-60%. Both were the result of signature-gathering campaigns. Measure X, placed on the ballot by the city council, would allow testing labs and sites for making marijuana-infused products, but no shops. PASSED 53-47%.

Del Rey Oaks (Monterey county) – Measure A would impose a tax of no more than 10% (5% when enacted) on gross receipts of cannabis businesses. PASSED 80-20%.

Dixon (Solano county) – Measure K would tax marijuana businesses. PASSED 65-35%

DunsmuirMeasure Y asks whether or not medical marjuana cultivation should be permitted in the city. FAILED 34-66%.

Fillmore (Ventura county) – Fillmore’s Measure H would tax commercial cultivation as much as $30/sq. ft. for the first 3000 sq. ft and $15 thereafter PASSED59-41%. Measure I would also tax retail transactions up to 15%. Read more. PASSED 64-36%.

Gonzales (Monterey county)- Measure W would enact a medical marijuana cultivation tax not to exceed $25 per square foot and a manufacturing tax not to exceed 15% of annual gross receipts. PASSED 72-28%

Greenfield (Monterey county) – Measure O would tax cultivation, dispensaries, deliveries, distribution, manufacturing, nurseries, testing, and transportation of medical and nonmedical marijuana, with a cultivation tax not to exceed $25 per square foot and all other cannabis activities at a rate not to exceed 10%. PASSED 64-36%

HaywardMeasure EE states, “To assure local control and close on-going deficits, shall the City of Hayward be authorized to enact a general tax ordinance not exceeding 15% of gross sales for all products associated with medical or adult use of cannabis, from cultivation, distribution, manufacturing, and retailing of cannabis or products derived therefrom, if the City of Hayward permits cannabis business activities, such tax to be in addition to any other taxes imposed by the City of Hayward or the State of California?” The measure does not actually authorize any permits though. PASSED 60-40%

Humboldt County – Measure S will tax cultivation at $1 per sq. ft. for outdoor, $2 for mixed light and $3 for indoor. PASSED 70-30%.

Inyo CountyMeasure G asks if the county should license commercial medical cannabis businesses including but not limited to, cultivation, processing, manufacturing, sales, distribution, warehousing and transportation. PASSED 54-46%

Measure H asks the same question for recreational cannabis, should Prop. 64 pass. PASSED 53.4-46.6%

Measure I asks if the county should enact a 5% gross receipts tax on commercial cannabis businesses (but no less than $1,250 per growing cycle for cultivation businesses) in the unincorporated area of Inyo County, and authorizing the Board of Supervisors to increase the tax to a maximum of 12.5% over time. PASSED 65-35%

King City (Monterey Co) – Measure J would tax medical and nonmedical marijuana businesses at $25.00 per square foot for the first 5,000 square feet and $10.00 per square foot thereafter for cultivation; not to exceed $5.00 per square foot for nurseries; $30,000.00 each for manufacturing and testing facilities. The city council has already approved licencing for marijuana businesses. PASSED 80-20%.

La Mesa (San Diego Co)– Measure U would authorize and regulate medical marijuana dispensaries, and the cultivating and manufacturing of medical marijuana. PASSED 51.4 -48.6%

Laguna Beach city leaders don’t like Measure KK, a ballot initiative that would allow two dispensaries in town without taxing them. But rather than pitch a competing measure, City Council members opted to campaign against the ballot measure. FAILED 29-71%

Lake County – Measure C asks, “Shall an annual general purpose tax be imposed on legally-authorized cannabis cultivation, with an exemption for personal medicinal use, occurring in unincorporated areas of the County of Lake of $1.00 per square foot of an outdoor cultivation site, $2.00 per square foot of a mixed-light cultivation site, and $3.00 per square foot of an indoor cultivation site, subject to annual Consumer Price Index increases, and generating annual revenue of approximately $8 million per average year?” PASSED 62-38%.

Lemon Grove (San Diego Co) – Measure V asks, “Shall an Ordinance to Rescind the prohibition of Marijuana Dispensaries and Add the Medical Marijuana Regulatory Ordinance to the Lemon Grove Municipal Code be adopted?” FAILED 48.2-51.7%

Long BeachTwo competing measures will be on the ballot. Current tax rates are 6-10% of gross receipts, $15-$50 per square foot for cultivation, and $10 per square foot on all business improvements. The petition-driven Measure MM would bring those down to 6% of gross receipts and $10 per square foot (medical and recreational). FAILED with 59% of vote. The City’s proposal, Measure MA, would establish tax rates for medical dispensaries of 6-8% of gross receipts, and 8-12% for recreational stores. Processing, Distributing, Transporting, or Testing facilities would pay 6-8% of gross receipts and cultivation facilities (medical and recreational) $12-$15 per square foot. PASSED 68-32%. Measure MA got more of the vote, overriding MM and so taking effect 10 days after the election.

Marysville – Measure F would enact a cannabis business tax which will start at 5 percent and is capped at 15 percent, plus a $15 per square foot of canopy space cultivation tax with a cap of $25. Read more. PASSED 62.5-37.5%.

Mendocino County Measure AF, the Mendocino Heritage Initiative, would protect personal cultivation of up to 100 square feet and caregiver cultivation of up to 500 square feet as not requiring local permits. Would permit a MicroBusiness of up to 2500 square feet of cultivation and other MCRSA-type permits. Has a residency requirement that expires in 2020. Other permits for dispensaries, transportation, manufacturing, and nurseries would be issued, with a 2.5% gross receipts tax on all medical marijuana businesses and a 5% tax on recreational businesses. FAILED 36-64%
Measure AI, a competing measure approved by the Mendocino Board of Supervisors would enact a 2.5 percent business tax on gross sales from marijuana cultivation and dispensaries, along with a $2,500 annual fee on marijuana distributors, delivery services, nurseries and testing laboratories. That business tax could be raised in increments of 2.5 percent up to a maximum of 10 percent, whether on medicinal or recreational pot. Should both measures pass, the one with the most votes will be enacted. PASSED 63.6-36.4%

Measure AJ is an advisory measure asking where the marjority of tax monies should go: “for funding enforcement of marijuana regulations, enhanced mental health services, repair of county roads, and increase fire and emergency medical services?” PASSED 69-31%

Monterey CountyMeasure Y – would tax commercial marijuana businesses in the unincorporated area of Monterey County only (not cities) up to a maximum of: $25 per square foot on cultivation; $5 per square foot on nurseries ; and 10% of gross receipts on other marijuana business activities. PASSED 74-26%.

Perris (Riverside Co) – Two measures will be on the November ballot — Measure J for the taxing of medical marijuana dispensaries in the city PASSED 69.4-30.5%;

and Measure K for the oversight of those enterprises.. Read more. PASSED 76.5-23.5%

Point Arena (Mendocino Co)- Measure AE would impose a 7% tax on nonmedical cannabis and a 3% tax on medical cannabis businesses. PASSED 66-34%

Rio Dell (Humboldt Co) – Measure T asks, “Should the City of Rio Dell, by the necessary and appropriate action, permit commercial cannabis business activity, including cannabis cultivation, testing, processing and sales, within the area of the City that is located to the north of the Eel River and commonly referred to as the Sawmill Annexation Area if that activity is subject to local taxation?” PASSED 56-44%.

Salinas – Measure L would impose taxes on medical and nonmedical cannabis businesses not to exceed $25 per square foot on cultivation, and 10% of annual gross receipts on dispensaries, manufacturing, and delivery businesses. PASSED 74-26%

San Bernardino (city)Three competing ballot measures would allow for dispensaries in the city.

Measure N would allow for up to 20 dispensaries and tax them at 5% of gross receipts.FAILED (Got bare majority 50.04%, but overridden by Measure O)

Measure O would establish an application fee of $250 and annual fees of $5/square foot of cultivation, $5/sq foot of occupied business or manufacture space, and $100 per transport vehicle. Measure O also self-servingly designates certain parcels for legal licensing. PASSED 54-46%.

Measure P, prepared by the city in consultation with cannabis advocates, would give the City Council more direct control over marijuana businesses if residents allow for them. FAILED 47.4-52.6%.

San Diego (city)Measure N would tax nonmedical marijuana businesses at a rate of 5%, raising to 8% in 2019 and amendable up to 15% thereafter, should voters approve Prop. 64. Measure N is endorsed by San Diego Citizens for Patient Rights PASSED 68-32%

San Jacinto (Riverside Co) – The city council put Measure AAon the ballot taxing gross receipts of marijuana businesses at 15%, and enacting a $50/square foot cultivation tax. PASSED 66.4-33.6%.

San LeandroMeasure NN reads: “To maintain and enhance the City of San Leandro, with funding that cannot be taken by Sacramento, including: social services, public art, programs that celebrate diversity, multilingual programming and other general city services, shall the City of San Leandro levy an ongoing tax of up to 10% of gross receipts of cannabis (marijuana) businesses in the city, providing $500,000 annually, requiring independent citizen oversight, financial audits, and that all funds stay in the City of San Leandro?” PASSED 74-26%/

Measure OO Business License Tax Measure of $100 per 1000 sq feet of warehouses (all kinds) PASSED 65.5-34.5%

Santa Barbara (city) – Measure D would enable the city council to enact an excessively high 20% tax on gross receipts for both recreational marijuana businesses, and a 10% tax on medical marijuana ones. The Council could also enact a lower tax. PASSED 69.6-30,4%

Santa Cruz County – Voters will consider Measure E to extend their 7% tax to cultivators and others. Read more. PASSED 80-20%.

Santa Cruz City – Measure I – Cannabis Business Tax PASSED 85-15%.

Sierra County Measure B would specifically outlaw commercial cultivation. FAILED 42-58%.

Solano County – Measure C would place a tax of up to 15 percent on all marijuana-based businesses – medical or recreational – in the unincorporated area of the county. It would be based on gross receipts. PASSED 63-37%

Stockton – Measure P would allow for a total of four medical marijuana dispensaries and four cultivation sites in Stockton. PASSED 55-45%

Measure Q would increase the medical cannabis business license tax from $25 per $1,000 of annual gross receipts to a minimum of $35 and a maximum of $50 per $1,000. PASSED 64-36%

Upland (San Bernardino Co) – Measure U would allow licensing of up to three medical marijuana dispensaries, and allow them, and only them, to deliver. FAILED 31-69%

Watsonville (Monterey Co) Measure L Cannabis Business Tax PASSED 74-26%

Measure M: Cannabis Advisory Measure PASSED 73-27%

Yuba County – Measure E will enable Yuba county to issue licenses under state law (MMRSA). As per MMRSA, personal gardens under 100 square feet and caregiver gardens under 500 square feet will not require licensing; larger gardens will require administrative permits or condiditional use permits, depending on zoning, and must be at least three acres in size. end pagecell1 FAILED 44-56%


Press report here:



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