Cities around America are looking at yawning budget deficits due to the sudden economic slowdown arising from the COVID-19 pandemic. Today, Politico, a news source covering the federal government, has this piece suggesting many California cities are looking to tax cannabis commerce to close the gap.

The deadline to place measures on the November 3, 2020 ballot is August 7th, though elections officials will surely appreciate more notice. A useful model ordinance to tax cannabis activity, that reflects public health policy advice, is available here. [Disclosure: I prepared that ordinance on retainer to the Public Heath Institute.] The Public Health Institute also provides a model land use ordinance to regulate cannabis commerce, too. [Disclosure: I worked on that, too.]

The City of Grass Valley recently placed a tax on the ballot, using the Public Health Institute model. News coverage of that proposal is here. [Disclosure: CH&W serves as City Attorney of Grass Valley and wrote its ordinance.]