Nearly $85 million in tax revenues collected in Oregon from marijuana taxes is on its way to various programs throughout the state, the very first allocation in the state.
The funds will be going to a variety of places: the State School Fund, the Mental Health, Alcoholism, and Drug Services Account, the Oregon State Police, and the Oregon Health Authority, as well as cities and counties across the state.
Here are the numbers. Between January 4th, 2016, and August 31st, 2017, the Department of Revenue collected $108.6 million in both state and local marijuana taxes; of that, $94.55 million was state taxes that were eligible for distribution. Local taxes that are collected by the department on behalf of cities and counties are distributed to them quarterly.
$9.56 million of that eligible $94.55 million went to repaying the Oregon Liquor Control Commissions start-up costs that was required under Senate bills 1057 and 1597, and covering administrative costs of the Department of Revenue. The remaining $85 million was distributed based on formulas provided in House Bill 3470. The State’s School fund took 40 percent, totaling a cool $34 million. The Mental Health, Alcoholism, and Drug Services Account received 20 percent, or $17 million. The Oregon State Police were provided with 15 percent, or $12.75 million of the revenues. The Oregon Health Authority received 5 percent of the taxes, totaling $4.25 million.
Cities and counties received 10 percent each, totaling $17 million altogether, but the algorithms for determining what municipalities got what is a little more complicated. There are two formulas for determining those numbers: one for revenues collected before July 1st, 2017, and one for after that date. Pre-July 1st, 2017, calculations leaned primarily on population count of those cities and counties, and the more recent formula takes more into account.
For cities, only municipalities allowing all license types are entitled to a portion of the 10%, and those that are eligible have their number calculated based on population, which determines 75 percent of what they receive, and the amount of grower, wholesaler, processor, and retailer licenses that are registered in that city, which determine the remaining 25 percent of what they make.
For counties, half of their share is based on the total available grow canopy area in that county, and half is determined by the sum of wholesaler, processor, and retailer licenses in that county.
Cities and counties will all get a portion of the taxes collected before July 1st regardless of whether or not they allow recreational cannabis businesses to operate in their locale. Cities that don’t allow recreational businesses to operate won’t get any tax revenue collected after July 1st, and counties that don’t allow recreational businesses to operate won’t get the half of their revenue based on grow canopy, since there would be none, and if they don’t allow any licenses in their county, they aren’t eligible for the half of the revenue that would be calculated using those numbers.