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Published on Friday, February 7, 2014

Cities need to take action to keep marijuana revenue bills moving

SHB 2144 Today AWC sent out action alerts to all of our cities asking you to contact your legislators. Cities’ major priority for the 2014 session is securing a share of marijuana revenue from recreational-marijuana sales. AWC is working on two bills, and SSB 5887, that provide for marijuana revenue sharing and we need your help now to make sure these bills continue to move before the Legislative committee cutoff deadline Tuesday, February 11.

Please call or email your legislators in the next 48 hours.

  • SSB 5887: Ask your local Senator to support and urge the Senate Ways and Means Committee to hear and move SSB 5887. SSB 5887 provides locals with approximately 10 percent of the marijuana excise tax collected and it reconciles the medical and recreational marijuana systems. While we would like to see a larger share of revenue, we believe that this is a positive place to begin and want to keep this bill moving.
  • SHB 2144: This bill is up for executive session today at 1:30pm. Ask your local Representatives to support and urge the House Appropriations Committee to move SHB 2144. HB 2144 provides locals with approximately 10 percent of the marijuana excise tax collected. Again, while we would like to see a larger percentage shared with locals, it is a good start and we want to keep the bill moving. Unfortunately, this bill has been amended to include pre-emption of all local authority over marijuana businesses. Please remind your legislators that local control is imperative for cities and ask them to support an amendment to remove that provision from the bill.

Marijuana bills survive first cutoff deadline

As mentioned above, we are pushing for these bills to be heard in their respective fiscal committees. Both bills survived their original policy committee deadlines. However, SHB 2144 was amended as it was voted out of the House Government Accountability and Oversight Committee to include the very broad preemption language that had been in HB 2638. Cities strongly opposed this preemption of local authority and will work to remove that provision from the bill going forward. The bill was also amended to slightly revise the revenue sharing provisions – the bill now gives 10 percent of the 25 percent excise tax on producers and 20 percent of the 25 percent excise tax on retailers to local jurisdictions. This still equates to about 10 percent of the overall revenue.

Other marijuana bills still moving

A number of other marijuana bills are also still in play. SHB 2149, reconciling medical and recreational marijuana, had a hearing in House Appropriations on Friday. SSB 6178 also reconciles medical and recreational marijuana and is set to be voted out of the Senate Commerce & Labor Committee on Friday. There are also a number of other bills focused on technical fixes that continue to move forward.