Pot taxes pass in Colorado and Boulder

By Jessica Caballero

Boulder’s taxes on recreational marijuana are going to be much higher than any other city’s in the state of Colorado, thanks to voters in this year’s election. Both Proposition AA on the state level and Issue 2A on the city level, passed definitively.

The good news for medical marijuana red card holders is that Proposition AA’s taxes will not add to their expenses.

Proposition AA passed with a final reporting of 709,690 — or 64 percent — voting in approval, and 382,289 — or 35 percent — against. This will mean two additional taxes statewide for retail marijuana sales. The first will be a 15 percent excise tax that will be added to a second 10 percent sales tax. These will be in addition to the usual 2.9 percent state sales tax.

Money collected from Proposition AA will go back into regulating and monitoring the retail marijuana business.

The City of Boulder, as well as the state of Colorado, plan to use money collected from marijuana taxes to help education. Proposition AA dictates that the first $40 million of revenue be earmarked for public school capital construction, which is much needed after this September’s floods hit several Front Range districts.

Issue 2A in Boulder will partially go towards marijuana education, so children learn the dangers of the drug while it becomes more recreationally available.

Ballot Issue 2A will charge a 5 percent excise tax as well as a 3.5 percent sales tax on recreational marijuana in the city of Boulder. Both taxes have the potential to go as high as 10 percent in the future.

Issue 2A passed with a vote of 14,581 votes in approval, 7,058 against.

This potential 20 percent in taxes for Boulder’s recreational, retail marijuana sales will be added to the estimated maximum of nearly 30 percent being added to recreational pot sales by Proposition AA statewide.

In other nearby marijuana tax news, the city of Denver also approved its own 3.5 percent city tax that will be added on top of Proposition AA’s charge.

Other cities around the state of Colorado also approved their own excise taxes on retail marijuana. See an interactive map detailing how these taxes are going to impact marijuana costs around the state.


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