Friday, February 19, 2016

Senator McGuire’s “Marijuana Value Tax Act” is referred to Governance and Finance Committee, could be considered on March 13th

SB 987,the “Marijuana Value Tax Act,” which would impose a 15% excise tax on retail sales of medical cannabis in California, has been referred to the California State Senate’s Governance and Finance Committee.  

The bill’s author, California State Senator Mike McGuire, is also the author of last year’s SB 643, the “Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act,” (MMRSA) which established a state-wide system of licensure of the component elements of the medical cannabis value and supply chains.  It is expected that the model set forth in the MMRSA will provide the basis for future regulation of recreational cannabis in the state, at such time as that occurs.

March 12th will be the bill’s 31st day in print.  The bill can be considered by the committee on or after that date.  According to the committee's web site,  it "meets every Wednesday of the month, at 9:30 A.M. in Room 112."  So the earliest the bill could be considered would be March 13th, which is a Wednesday.

The Senate Governance and Finance Committee is chaired by the ebullient former Speaker of the California Assembly Robert “Bob” Hertzberg, who now represents the 18th Senatorial District, in the San Fernando Valley in the City of Los Angeles.

The Vice Chair is Senator Janet Nguyen.  

Other members of the committee are:

Since the bill imposes a tax, it will require a two-thirds vote to pass each house of the legislature.  It is, however, categorized on its "Status" page in the state legislative database as a "Non-Tax Levy" bill.  Since it seems to levy a tax, further Etopia News investigation will next focus on the reason for this seeming anomaly.

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