BUTTE - Voters in Butte-Silver Bow will get a chance in June to decide if they want to be a local tax on marijuana sales.
Voters will get to choose between two initiatives: The first being a 3 percent tax on recreational marijuana sales and a separate initiative of a 3 percent tax on medical marijuana sales.
“I’m glad that Silver Bow has split the tax options in the vote, so there will be a vote on a recreational 3 percent, as well as a medical 3 percent and you can vote differently on both of those options,” said Cassidy Duddy the manager at Apogee Gardens in Butte.
The state already taxes recreational marijuana sales at 20 percent after recreational sales became legal on Jan. 1st. The current medical marijuana law was passed in 2016 and the state taxes it at 4 percent.
“I would personally vote against it for the medical tax portion. I just don’t believe medical cannabis should be taxed,” said Collective Elevation owner Matt Boyle.
If the local taxes are adopted, Butte’s commissioners will determine where those funds will be spent. Some dispensary owners support a local tax on recreational cannabis.
“Yeah, it would be good to see it go to schools, roads, rehabilitation efforts, all sorts of things like that, there’s no shortage of things we could use that’s for sure,” said Boyle.
Distributors don’t believe any new tax is going to hurt sales which have been very brisk since recreational marijuana was approved at the beginning of the year.
“Honestly, the change from medical to medical and recreational has been amazing. We’ve got lots of new customers, lots of new faces, lots of returning faces,” said Duddy.
The initiatives will be on the June 7th primary ballot.