Marijuana tax on agenda for Silverthorne Town Council Wednesday |

Marijuana tax on agenda for Silverthorne Town Council Wednesday

The Silverthorne Town Council is considering whether or not to give voters the option to impose a 5 percent excise tax on retail marijuana sales beginning in 2014.

The conversation will be aired in public during Wednesday’s town council meeting when Ordinance 2013-09 is presented on first reading. The ordinance, if approved on final reading during a future town council meeting, would propose the tax initiative to voters as a ballot question during a special election scheduled to coincide with state and county elections in November.

A special November election is necessary to meet the initiative’s Jan. 1 implementation date because town elections are typically held in April. The excise tax must also be presented in the form of a ballot question in accordance with the Taxpayer Bill of Rights.

Donna Braun, finance director for the town of Silverthorne, said Wednesday the excise tax could generate up to $67,5000 in funding in 2014 if the ordinance and subsequent ballot question are approved. Those funds would be used to offset the anticipated increase in workload for the licensing of new retail marijuana stores, DUI enforcement and mental health support services within the town.

Medicinal marijuana sales, which are only subject to Silverthorne’s retail sales taxes, would be exempt from the proposed 5 percent excise tax, Braun said.

The Silverthorne Town Council meeting is open to the public and will be held at 6 p.m. Wednesday at Silverthorne Town Hall, 601 Center Circle.

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