Citing black market competitive advantages, legal marijuana industry pushes for tax reform

ANCHORAGE (KTUU) — Alaska marijuana growers are pushing for changes to the state’s current marijuana tax scheme, saying competition with the black market is difficult, especially because the legal industry has such high expenses, including state taxes.

Alaska marijuana growers pay the state tax $50 per ounce of cannabis bud, or about $800 a pound, and $15 an ounce for other parts of the plant like the trimmings of leaves and stems used to make byproducts like hash and edibles.

The Marijuana Control Board met Wednesday morning in Anchorage to begin a series of meetings about the industry, including taxes.

The board didn’t make any recommendations for changes.

“Our tax structure is built into the statute that was approved by the voters, and that can only be changed by the legislature,” said Mark Springer, chairman Alaska Marijuana Control Board.

Some in the industry say it’s difficult to compete with the black market, which has

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