State House passes recreational marijuana reform bill
OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) - The House on Friday passed a measure that makes several changes to the state's new recreational marijuana market, including eliminating the three-tier tax structure and replacing it with a single excise tax of 37 percent at the point of sale.
House Bill 2136 passed the House on a 59-38 vote and now heads to the Senate for consideration. An amendment that passed Friday removed language from the original bill that would have only allowed local bans on licensed marijuana businesses if approved by the jurisdiction's voters.
To encourage more cities and counties to allow marijuana businesses, the bill directs the state to share pot revenue with jurisdictions that do so. It would also allow them to adopt more flexible zoning for where pot grows and stores can be located.
The original bill had set the excise tax rate at 30 percent, and Rep. Reuven Carlyle, a Democrat from Seattle who sponsored the measure, said that he personally believes the 37 percent rate negotiated with the Senate "is a mistake."
"But we find ourselves at a time of political addiction to the shaky perception of a new revenue pillar that is questionable at best," he said, noting budget assumptions of how much the new market might bring to the state. "I acknowledge that it is irresistible to some. I think we will come to regret that."
The Bubble Gum originated in Indiana in the 1970s. After making the rounds in the States, the genetics were taken to Holland during the 1990s, where a stable interbred variety was developed. Named Bubble Gum from the start, this variety quickly acquired a reputation for its sweetness, so much that the name "Bubble Gum" has been widely borrowed for all sorts of seeds and weed. The winner of many accolades, Bubble Gum has placed repeatedly in the High Times Cannabis Cup: 3rd place in 1994 for best coffeeshop product, 2nd place for best bioproduct and 2nd for the overall Cannabis Cup in 1995, and 2nd place again in 1999 for the overall Cannabis Cup.
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