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County board approves taxing cannabis sales

The Ogle County Board approved a measure last week to collect sales tax on recreational cannabis.

The board voted 17-5 Sept. 17 to impose a 3.75 percent tax on recreational cannabis sold in unincorporated areas of the county and a three percent tax on sales made in municipalities.

State’s Attorney Eric Morrow said the board could pass the tax and still choose not to allow cannabis-related businesses in unincorporated areas of the county.

Approval of the measure makes it possible for the county to collect taxes from the businesses in the municipalities that do allow them.

Local city councils and village board have discussed the pros and cons in recent weeks.

The Oregon City Council voted Sept. 10 to have city attorney Paul Chadwick draw up the ordinances for retail dispensaries, craft growers, infusers, and transporters. They rejected having on-site consumption facilities and cultivators.

A state law takes passed by the Illinois General Assembly this summer will allow Illinoisans who are 21 or older to legally possess 30 grams (about one ounce) of cannabis for recreational use.

Medical marijuana dispensaries will be the only legal sellers of marijuana for recreational use at first, but by mid-2020, the state is expected grant additional licenses.

The businesses will be highly regulated.

Counties and cities are voting on local marijuana taxes this month to allow enough time for the Illinois Department of Revenue to process the requests by the start of the year.