Posted on August 22, 2010
Devils advocate; Prop19 does not exempt cannabis medicine from taxes
This is the statement I often get from opponents of Prop 19.
“Proposition 19 does not exempt patients from taxes”
If Proposition 215 doesn’t already do that, then Proposition 19 won’t change anything.
Medical marijuana is already technically taxable in California.
At present only a portion of the state’s 200-plus medical cannabis dispensaries pay sales taxes. In principle, medical cannabis is subject to sales tax under current Board of Equalization rules, which exempt only drugs dispensed in licensed pharmacies by a physician’s prescription. However, many patients’ groups contend that sales tax shouldn’t apply to non-profit cooperatives and collectives.
So that is a reason for another new initiative. If people want marijuana to not be a taxable substance for patients, then they need to step up to the plate and make that happen. Because medical marijuana, unless prescribed via a pharmacy with DEA drug scheduling, etc, is not presently exempt from taxes. So again, Prop19 doesn’t change Prop215.