On Tuesday November 8th, 2016 voters approved Proposition 64. For those of you who don’t know, California Proposition 64 is the California Marijuana Legalization Initiative also known to its supporters as the Adult Use of Marijuana Act initiative.
Proposition 64 declared it legal for all individuals to not only use marijuana for personal use, but they now also have the capability to grow. However, the sale and taxation of recreational marijuana will not go into effect until January 1, 2018.
Proposition 64 is now allowing adults 21 years of age or older to possess and use marijuana for recreational purposes. The measure has created two new taxes, one levied on cultivation and the other on retail price. As of now, the cultivation tax is set to be $9.25 per ounce for flowers and $2.75 per ounce for leaves. The second tax is a 15 percent tax on the retail price of marijuana. Both of the taxes will be adjusted for inflation starting around 2020.
Before any of this can happen, all of the revenue from the two taxes will be deposited into a new California Marijuana Tax Fund. The revenue will first be used to cover administration costs and enforcing the measure itself and next, it will be distributed to treatments, drug research, youth programs, enforcement and health and safety grants addressing marijuana as well as finding new ways to prevent environmental damage resulting from illegal marijuana production.
Breakdown of how it will be distributed:
- $2 million per year will go to the UCSD Center for Medical Cannabis Research to study medical marijuana
- $10 million per year for the next 11 years will be for the sole use of public California universities to research and evaluate the implementation and impact of Proposition 64
- $3 million annually for the next five years will go to the California Highway Patrol to help develop protocols that will be able to determine whether or not a vehicle operator is impaired due to marijuana consumption
- $10 million per year, increasing each year by another $10 million until reaching $50 million in 2022, will be for grants to local health departments and community-based nonprofits that support different types of treatments and disorders while also offering many different services such as job placement, substance abuse and medical care
The remaining revenue will be distributed as follows:
- 60 percent will go to youth programs including but not limited to drug education, prevention, and treatment
- 20 percent will help to prevent and alleviate environmental damage that has already caused from illegal marijuana producers
- 20 percent will also go to programs that have been designed to reduce driving under the influence of marijuana
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