Senate bill to raise local tax on marijuana sales clears committee

Sen. Lynn Findley, R-Vale, top says 'Yes,' when asked by Sen. Lee Beyer, chairman of the Senate Committee on Finance and Revenue, if he would like to carry Senate Bill 1506 to the Senate Floor. The bill passed out of the committee on Monday morning with an amendment that narrowed the focus to cities meeting certain criteria.

ONTARIO — A bill that would allow the city of Ontario to go to voters for more local tax revenues from the sales of recreational marijuana goods is still winding its way through Oregon’s short legislative session. However, there has been a slight amendment. As introduced by Sen. Lynn Findley, R-Vale, Senate Bill 1506 would allow municipalities to raise the local tax up from the 3% cap to no more than 10% by ordinance. Voters would get the final say on the matter during a General Election.

Though the city of Ontario is not named in the bill, as amended, the focus has been narrowed to those cities which are in a county with a population of 30,000 or more and which Xborder another state that prohibits the sale of marijuana. During a work session on Monday, Findley said the bill was a “home-rule issue.” He noted that there are three counties in Oregon which border Idaho, but only one — Malheur County — has a population that would fit the bill. And in the county, only one city — Ontario — fits the bill.

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