Burning Issue: L.A. Times Passes on City Medical Marijuana Tax
And you say we're the party poopers when it comes to coverage of L.A.'s marijuana scene?
Green for parks and libraries?
Take a look at Sunday's Los Angeles Times. The paper's dead against the March 8 ballot measure that would let the city tax medical pot shops. Just say no, argues the Times. Why?
Whew. Hold on to your bongs, stoners. The paper calls the state's medical-weed business ...
... a "quasi-legal industry."
That's right. The Times states:
"Getting in bed with a quasi-legal industry has drawbacks. If city government became reliant on tax revenue from medical marijuana sellers, city officials would be less likely to pass ordinances restricting their operations and police would be less inclined to raid their establishments to check whether they're really running on a nonprofit basis. A decrease in such scrutiny would encourage more illegal for-profit dispensaries, which draw other kinds of crime."
Again, that's the Times, not us. Send your hate email their way.
The paper notes that Jerry Brown, as attorney general, argued that state law says medical marijuana dispensaries must be nonprofit and supplied by members (and not by cartels and gang-driven grow houses).
Now, say what you will about pot shops, but you know and I know that grandma isn't sharing her backyard bud with friends at a nonprofit rate here.
What's more, many dispensaries, if not most, refuse to even register with the IRS as nonprofits for fear of running afoul of federal law that says there's no such thing as medical weed.
The L.A. City Attorney says taxing pot shops, then, would be illegal, particularly if they're running as for-profits.
What do you think? Yes to taxing weed? Measure M would let the city take home $50 for every $1,000 in pot-shop sales.