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Arizona Collected More Tax Revenue From Marijuana Than Alcohol And Tobacco Combined, March Data Shows

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Arizona generated more tax revenue to the state general fund from legal marijuana sales than from tobacco and alcohol combined last month, state data released last week shows.

Tax deposits to the state general fund from medical and adult-use cannabis reached about $6.3 million in March, compared to $1.7 million from tobacco and $3.7 million from alcohol sales, according to the Arizona Joint Legislative Budget Committee (JLBC).

Beyond that $6.3 million in cannabis tax dollars for the general fund, marijuana excise taxes separately exceeded another $11.9 million last month, for a total of $18.2 million in marijuana revenue—most of which goes to the state, with smaller portions being distributed to cities and counties.

Advocates and stakeholders are touting the March figures. Not only do they underscore the economic opportunity of legalization, but the hope is that providing regulated access to cannabis means fewer people will use more dangerous drugs like alcohol and tobacco.

New JLBC numbers are out.

Tax revenue by industry in March:

Tobacco: $1.7m
Liquor: $3.7m
Cannabis: $6.3m

Happy 420, Arizona Taxpayers!

— Arizona Dispensaries Association (@az_dispensaries) April 20, 2022

To that end, alcohol tax revenue did fall short of the JLBC’s projections by $1.4 million, but the analysis

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California Assembly Approves Senate-Passed Bill To Allow Safe Drug Consumption Site Pilot Program

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The California Assembly on Thursday approved a Senate-passed bill that would establish a pilot program to allow certain jurisdictions throughout the state to authorize safe consumption sites where people could use currently illicit drugs in a medically supervised environment.

The legislation from Sen. Scott Wiener (D) cleared the chamber in a 42-28 vote. Because it was amended during the Assembly committee process, it must still return to the Senate for concurrence following the July recess before potentially heading to the governor’s desk.

It’s been a years-long journey for SB 57, which was first introduced in December 2020 and passed the full Senate in April 2021. Prior to the latest floor vote in the Assembly, it advanced through the Health Committee and Public Safety Committee.

Wiener, who has championed several drug policy reform bills in the legislation, including one to legalize possession of psychedelics that’s sat in legislative limbo since clearing the Senate and two Assembly panels last year, said following Thursday’s vote that safe consumption sites “are a proven strategy to save lives & get people into treatment.”

The bill now returns to the Senate after our July recess for final sign off before heading to the Governor.

Huge thanks

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California Marijuana Tax Relief Bill Heads To Governor’s Desk

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The California legislature on Wednesday approved a wide-ranging bill to restructure the state’s adult-use marijuana program, including by eliminating a cannabis cultivation tax, in an effort to provide industry relief and further curtail the illicit market.

AB 195, which builds upon an amended budget proposal that Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) unveiled last month, passed both chambers with nearly unanimous support. While stakeholders say there’s still more to be done, many feel the bill represents a significant, positive development in the evolving industry.

The key provisions that lawmakers secured would eliminate the marijuana cultivation tax and shift the point of collection and remittance for the separate 15 percent excise tax on cannabis sales from the distribution to retail level. Additionally, there will be no increase in the excise tax for at least three years under the proposal, which is expected to be signed by the governor and then take effect immediately.

“We are extremely pleased at the hard-fought progress that we were able to make with this bill,” Lindsay Robinson, executive director of the California Cannabis Industry Association (CCIA), told Marijuana Moment in a phone interview on Thursday.

“It is certainly not perfect—and we acknowledge that, and we acknowledge that there

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Congressional Committee Will Vote On Protecting State Marijuana Programs From Federal Interference On Tuesday

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A key congressional committee will vote on an amendment to protect all state, territory and tribal cannabis programs from federal interference on Tuesday, multiple congressional offices tell Marijuana Moment.

Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) will be filing the amendment during a House Appropriations Committee markup of the Fiscal Year 2023 spending legislation for Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies (CSJ).

Lee and other pro-reform lawmakers such as Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) and Tom McClintock (R-CA) had urged congressional leaders to include the broad protections in the base appropriations bill, but that did not come to fruition, despite the bipartisan request.

Now they will again seek to add provisions—which would prevent the Justice Department from using federally appropriated dollars to interfere in the implementation of state, territory and tribal cannabis laws—at the committee level.

Blumenauer, Lee, Holmes Norton and McClintock and 44 other congressional colleagues recently sent a letter to calling on the chairman and ranking member of an appropriations subcommittee to address the issue through the must-pass legislation.

In general, the proposed provisions would block “the Department of Justice from prosecuting those who comply with their state or tribal marijuana laws,” the lawmakers wrote.

A congressional source told

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