In Colorado, illegal pot can be much cheaper than the legal stuff. There’s currently a 2.9% sales tax, a 10% marijuana sales tax, and on top of that a 15% excise tax on retail marijuana, according to Forbes. That adds up to 27.9%, and with all these taxes, many smokers now choose to buy illegally because fuck taxes. It is estimated that over 40% of people who purchase pot in Colorado get their stuff on the D.L.
Some patients may even be reselling medical stock priced at 2.9%. A medical marijuana card will cost you around $15, and about 23% of pot smokers in Colorado have one of them. Colorado tax arguably violates the Fifth Amendment, as it requires that those who pay it admit to a crime in the eyes of federal jurisdiction, yet it is still being upheld.
Some sellers operate as non-profit social organisations to dodge the tax, but this has been only partially effective.
The Marijuana Tax Equity Act however would put an end to federal prohibition, as well as allowing marijuana to be taxed up to 50%. This bill would also put a 50% tax on cannabis sales and on top of that you would also get an annual occupational tax if you are a legal marijuana worker. With any luck, tax revenues will be based upon hard data and realistic projections instead of federal law.
We’ll have to wait and see, but workers across Colorado are hoping for a positive result from this ongoing argument.