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Santa Barbara County’s cannabis tax passing easily
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Santa Barbara County’s proposed tax on cannabis operations will breeze to approval, if unofficial results Tuesday night are any indication.

As of 11 p.m. Tuesday, Measure T had gathered 41,095 “yes” votes, or 75.73 percent, and only 13,170 “no” votes, or 24.27 percent with 196 of 196 precincts reporting.

Certified election results will be posted on the county website sbcvote.com no later than July 5 at 5 p.m.

As a general tax, the measure only needs 50 percent plus one voter to say “yes” for the measure to pass.

Measure T simply asks whether a new section imposing the cannabis tax should be added to the County Code.

But essentially, it authorizes the Board of Supervisors to impose a general tax on gross receipts of cannabis operations at the rates of 1 percent on nurseries and distributors, 3 percent on manufacturers, 4 percent on cultivators and 6 percent on retailers and microbusinesses.

Language included in the ballot measure estimates the tax will raise $5 million to $25 million for “general government purposes, such as law enforcement, health care, parks, roads and others,” and will have no end date.

But revenues from the cannabis tax will also be used to help offset the costs of conducting enforcement operations against illegal cannabis operations and some other costs associated with administering the cannabis ordinance.

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County Reporter/Associate Editor

Lee Central Coast Newspapers associate editor Mike Hodgson covers Santa Barbara County government and events and issues in Santa Ynez Valley. Follow him on Twitter @MHodgsonSYVNews.

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