Medical cannabis should be tax exempt

Why medical cannabis should be tax exempt

If there were any doubts that cannabis legalization was just a massive money grab for the government, look no farther than the excise tax that will apply to both medical and recreational cannabis. The excise tax (which is either a dollar per gram or 10% of the sale price, whichever is greater ) will be in addition to all of the additional various mark-ups and taxation , which all but guarantees the government will fail in their goal to undercut the illicit market.

Particularly problematic is the way the government is lumping recreational and medical cannabis use together in regards to the excise tax. There are individuals with a valid need, while the fact that cannabis is used medicinally and recreationally might be confusing to some since all prescription medicines are tax exempt and their cannabis shouldn’t be taxed.

Why medical cannabis Shouldn’t Be taxed

E-1528 is a request that’s been going around the past couple of months that calls on the Canadian government to remove the excise tax from medical cannabis. It is sponsored by Don Davies, the NDP MP for BC & rsquo; s Vancouver Kingsway riding, and was initiated by Heather Tayler, an advisor at the CAMCD.

  • Implementing any tax to clinically prescribed cannabis is inconsistent with the taxation of the other prescription medicines, which are tax exempt;
  • Taxes applied to medical cannabis create financial barriers to health and well-being for patients, and discourage Canadians from accessing the controlled medical cannabis system;
  • Patients pay sales tax on medical cannabis and aren’t qualified for reimbursement under most insurance plans in Canada; and
  • The national government’s newly announced proposal to apply excise taxes to medical cannabis, in addition to the existing sales tax, will drawback Canadians seeking relief from symptoms including side effects from cancer treatments, pain, seizures, anxiety and insomnia.

To sign the petition, go here: https://petitions.ourcommons.ca/en/Petition/Details?Petition=e-1528.

The request is open for signatures until Oct. 17, so spread the word as much as possible. As of writing, just 5697 signatures have been collected- shockingly low considering over 200,000 Canadians use cannabis medically.

Meanwhile, CannTrust says it will absorb the excise tax on behalf of patients

CannTrust is a licensed producer that announced it will “continue to place medical cannabis patients’ needs first” and consume the excise tax on medical cannabis, according to an Aug. 28 press release.

The press release takes a typically laudatory tone because it praises CannTrust’s “competitive pricing” and its “commitment to affordable medicine”, but that could be questionable as a quick look at their online shop shows their dried flower ranges from $9-12 per gram- not exactly compassionate pricing!

In the event that you added the 10% excise tax on those prices, that’s a massive rip-off in comparison to the $6.83 per gram Canadians pay on average, but it ought to be mentioned that CannTrust does sell shake for $4.50 and $7.50 per gram, although those products were temporarily unavailable at time of writing.

However, you can’t deny that while it’s a terrific way to build goodwill with medical cannabis patients, it’s also a savvy business move because they have to benefit from all the positive PR whilst also likely praying that this petition succeeds.

Published at Sat, 01 Sep 2018 23:00:51 +0000

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