Montana preparing to collect 1st medical marijuana tax

State revenue officials are working on the roll-out of the latest medical marijuana program with a tax on the drug — the first of its kind in the state — which could increase the agency's capacity for handling cash.

Legislators passed SB333 this spring, adding a number of regulations to the program. That includes a gross sales tax that providers will start putting on the books on July 1.

The tax will be 4 percent of gross sales from July 1, 2017, to June 30, 2018. After that the tax will be 2 percent.

For the Montana Department of Revenue, much of the setup is no different from any other specialty tax.

“Getting our computer system changed so it can accept those returns and create those accounts,” is their main concern, said Gene Walborn, deputy director at the revenue department.

What's unknown is how much physical cash the...

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