Californians will have their chance to vote for recreational marijuana this November, and many believe it will pass. Fillmore is just one city in the state that has already placed bans on growing and selling marijuana within city limits, but of those cities with bans, Fillmore is the only one considering reversing the ban in the future. Fillmore is also the only city in Ventura County to discuss taxing potential future marijuana sales, as the statewide bill could force the city to reverse the ban. City Council will revisit the issue of lifting the ban on August 9th, but they have already approved a measure that would allow up to 22.5% tax on marijuana sales. While some say a high tax could hurt the potential market, advocates are still happy to see progress towards reform.
"The taxes proposed are dangerously high and will only prevent legitimate providers form entering your city limits, and will encourage black market activity," said Mari Scott, the CEO of the California Emerald Club, a dispensary that delivers medical marijuana in Ventura County.
Fillmore is the first city in Ventura County to discuss taxing legal marijuana. It is also one of six cities with complete bans on growing and selling medical marijuana, but it is the only one of those to seriously consider lifting its ban, said Chelsea Sutula, the CEO of Sespe Creek Collective, another local delivery service, and the chair of the Cannabis Alliance's industry committee.
"They've been very open to meeting with us and very open to learning more about the issue," Sutula said. "They've been a little more proactive than some other council members in other cities."