It’s not often that people celebrate a new tax, especially if it’s a tax on something they use. Then there’s the Holistic Pain Management Institute of San Jose. They were delighted that City Council voted to institute a 7 percent tax on medical marijuana. They say it gives them legitimacy.
The decision was made possible after voters passed Measure U, which empowered City Council to impose a tax as high as 10 percent on marijuana. The 7 percent number was decided by City Councilman Pierluigi Oliverio, who says that the new tax would “be revenue to pay for city services.”
The vote was taken at a special meeting of City Council last night. While no regulations were passed concerning the medical marijuana collectives, such as permitting and operational requirements, one important decision was made. After the recent proliferation of new collectives in the city, the number of collectives was capped at 98, the same number that currently operates.
And as with every tax, there were people who opposed it too. Americans for Safe Access spokesperson Lauren Vasquez argued that as long as the existing dispensaries are not legally recognized, the new tax amounts to “taxation without representation.” Vasquez then suggested that the tax struck at the core of America’s values as a country, especially since the people who will be taxed are using marijuana for medical purposes: “Do we really want to levy a tax on people who are sick and suffering?” she asked.
Read More at ABC 7.