Sticker shock coming with California’s new legalized marijuana market


Government is going to be in charge. What else would you expect to happen?

From ABC News: California’s legal marijuana marketplace is coming with a kaleidoscope of new taxes and fees that could influence where it’s grown, how pot cookies and other munchies are produced and the price tag on just about everything.

Be ready for sticker shock. On a retail level, it costs about $35 to buy a small bag of good quality medical marijuana in Los Angeles, enough to roll five or six joints.

But in 2018, when legal sales take hold and additional taxes kick in, the cost of that same purchase in the new recreational market is expected to increase at the retail counter to $50 or $60. At the high end, that’s about a 70 percent jump.

Medical pot purchases are expected to rise in cost too, but not as steeply, industry experts say.

Or consider cannabis leaves, a sort of bottom-shelf product that comes from trimming prized plant buds. The loose, snipped leaves are typically gathered up and processed for use in cannabis-laced foods, ointments, concentrates and candies.

Growers sell a trash bag stuffed with clippings to manufacturers for about $50. But come January, the state will tax those leaves at $44 a pound. That means the tax payment on a bag holding 7 or 8 pounds would exceed the current market price by five or six times, forcing a huge price hike or, more likely, rendering it essentially valueless.

“All it would become is compost,” predicted Ryan Jennemann of THC Design in Los Angeles, whose company has used the leaves to manufacture concentrated oils.

Governments struggling to keep up with the cost of everything from worker pensions to paving streets are eager for the cascade of new tax money from commercial pot sales that could eventually top $1 billion statewide.

But higher taxes for businesses and consumers give the state’s thriving illicit market a built-in advantage. Operators in the legal market have been urging regulators to be aggressive about shutting down rogue operators.

Donnie Anderson, a Los Angeles medical cultivator and retailer, predicted the higher level of state taxation next year is “just going to help the illicit market thrive.” He said more needs to be done to cut the cost, especially for medical users, many of whom won’t be able to absorb a price jump.

The increased tax rates are just one part of California’s sprawling plan to transform its long-standing medical and illegal markets into a multibillion-dollar regulated economy, the nation’s largest legal pot shop. The reshaping of such an expansive illegal economy into a legal one hasn’t been witnessed since the end of Prohibition in 1933.

The change has come haltingly. Many cities are unlikely to be ready by Jan. 1 to issue business licenses, which are needed to operate in the new market, while big gaps remain in the system intended to move cannabis from the field to distribution centers, then to testing labs and eventually retail shops.

The path to legalization began last year when voters approved Proposition 64, which opened the way for recreational pot sales to adults. Medical marijuana has been legal in California for about two decades.

Come January, state taxes will include a 15 percent levy on purchases of all cannabis and cannabis products, including medical pot.

Local governments are free to slap on taxes on sales and growing too, and that has created a confusing patchwork of rates that vary city to city, county to county.

Read the rest of the story here.


18 responses to “Sticker shock coming with California’s new legalized marijuana market

  1. well La di da the whole argument that made drugs illegal at the begining of the 20th century was the gov’t inability to collect taxes on it. Now we in the 21st century the push to make weed legal is happening it will eventually be legal nation wide as long as gov’t is able to tax it…..


  2. Reblogged this on kommonsentsjane and commented:

    Reblogged on kommonsentsjane/blogkommonsents.

    Instead of touting fake climate change news – Governor Brown of CA needs to be touting real mary-ja-wanna news.

    The governor is one fry short of a Happy Meal.


    Liked by 2 people

  3. No different than the prices in CO. WHAT CA, NV, and the rest of the states who legalized rec. mj ARE NOT ready for, is the increase in mental health issues. Unfortunately, for CO at least, (who is very regulated) the rec. mj is not as clean (they use chemicals to grow it, nasty ones/which can be found in hair sample tests, etc. In CO, only growers and producers are allowed to TEST the mj product for any inconsistencies-NOT USERS); and the THC is very high, some bud at 28% and up, and some edibles at 80mg a piece. The problem is the cbd ratio to THC. CBD (and cbn’s) plays a role in helping to limit the psycho psysiological effects of THC. The CO rec. mj, doesnt have that inherent “safety mechanism”, (probably by design). Our mental health beds (very limited in number) are constantly full. Any mental health provider will tell you “the tide has changed due to legal rec. mj”. Unfortunately, (and probably by design) rec. mj has brought about alot of psychosis in a great % of individuals.(govt. knew what high THC did to humans back in the 50’s-60’s, like they do/did know about LSD. Check out FOIA documents) And unfortunately, and probably by design, the way they treat any psychosis in CO is thru anti-psychotics, sometimes prescribing more than 1 at a time. And unfortunately, and probably by design, if you ARE NOT PSYCHOTIC (only drug induced), TRUST ME, will be on these psychiatric drugs. Rec. mj in CO has created a “new beast”. I speak from exp. from a son who is now in “the CO mental health system”. It’s a hamster wheel that we cant get off. The young people have been told, MJ is not a (dangerous) drug at all and is safer than alcohol; Think again. That may have been true back when the mj was imported in bricks back in the 70’s -80’s where thc levels were less than 5%. Not anymore! I wish CA, NV and the rest of the states who legalize rec. mj-Good Luck! And I hope and pray everyone educates themselves and especially their children regarding this new beast called legalized rec. mj.-God bless!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Ha, nice pic of Jerry Brown, front, left side, right (?) side. Wonder how much weed he consumes at the governor’s mansion!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. so, basically, because of govt approval and involvement, marijuana will continue to be grown illegally by many…

    Liked by 2 people

  6. All this is exactly backward. No one needs the government’s permission to do this. I remember when it was virtually legal before the incredibly stupid and wasteful “War on Drugs” nonsense.

    That was never about “drugs”, it was an excuse to strip away rights. With all the real crime why do we need to spend time and attention on a non-issue? I really don’t care what someone does. Marijuana is not going to harm anyone unless they are over=the=top psychologically addicted.

    The others are up to the user. If the user commits a crime, under the influence or not they should be charged with that crime. Treatment should be available for those addicts who wish to kick their habits.

    Outlawing things we don’t like does not work. Most things of that nature are already illegal several times over. Government can’t control itself, how is it to control others? Why would it want to?

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Pingback: Sticker shock coming with California’s new legalized marijuana market — Fellowship of the Minds – NZ Conservative Coalition

  8. What a SHOCK!!Who cou8ld have seen THAT coming?

    Liked by 1 person

  9. guess they prefer to keep the laws in place so the lawyers, judges, cops, jailers, etc won’t be put out of work.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. I’ve heard speculation that the gov’t wants “in” not only for the ‘revenue’ but in order to include other ingredients; similar to the nicotine in cigarettes which the cigarette companies denied for years was addictive. But hey, I’m probably just a tin-foil hat, paranoid, schizoid who thinks conspiracies actually happen.

    Liked by 2 people

    • my understanding is the stuff that’s used today is more addictive than prior

      Liked by 1 person

    • that wouldn’t surprise me a bit. Its a LOT more pure than what the mexican cartel grows. Purity is great for medical, when cbd’s, cbns, etc are also known. There is a synergy between the number of chemicals naturally found in mj. By removing, adding, upping….it changes the whole structure of the plant, and that is what is happening with recreational mj. And the government already holds a patent on the chemicals of pot.
      The govt. is a nefarious group…nothing good happens when they get involved in anything. That is probably why as a CONSUMER of MJ, you cant get it tested legally by any state of colorado lab, public or private; they don’t want you to know what is in it. You cant take it to say, a lab in AZ, I tried. AZ said NO, because it is a federal crime to cross state lines with mj. SO – I wouldn’t touch the stuff with a 10 foot pole – knowing what I know!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Sounds like they’ve finally come up with a solution to end pot smoking!!


  12. I will be frank and candid: I stopped smoking pot in 1984 after 11 years of doing it. For a while I liked it. Then I came to hate it. It took me a while, but I quit.
    Let’s be honest: Prohibition has been proved not to work. I have not smoke pot since 1984—33 years. Yet the facts are the facts: Smokers are gonna smoke.
    I am a libertarian. Ronald Reagan—no pot smoker he—said, “In the present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem. Government is the problem.”

    We the People run this place. Warts and all. The “War on Drugs” has been a COLOSSAL failure. Enough is enough.


  13. As so many have commented here, the problem is people being consumers who want it gift-wrapped and sanctioned by the state. Here’s a comic on the subject! Enjoy!


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