Alaska: Sitka School Board endorses plan to tax cannabis to support student activities

Alaska: Sitka School Board endorses plan to tax cannabis to support student activities
CANNANNEW REPORT

The Sitka School Board has offered its informal support for a plan to tax the sale of cannabis products, in order to pay for extracurricular activities in the school district. The Sitka Assembly has drafted a ballot proposition to put before voters this fall that would eliminate the municipal sales tax on cannabis, and replace it with a slightly higher consumer tax. At its most recent meeting, the school board backed the proposition – with one major caveat. The problem is just a line in the ballot proposition ordinance stating that the money raised by the new tax would be “included in the calculation of local support” per state law – where it might have the unintended effect of diverting funding from classrooms into extracurriculars. That’s an oversight, according to assembly member Rebecca Himschoot, who sponsored the ordinance. She cleared things up with the school board at its meeting on June 1. This money is intended to land outside the state funding formula, and directly support student participation in sports and activities. “It’s really important to the assembly, or at least to the three co-sponsors that these funds be supplemental to the district’s existing effort,” said Himschoot. “So our expectation is that the district will continue with current funding levels. And we’ll be adding to that, and the ultimate goal — obviously, elusive-but-worthy — will be to make school activities, if at all possible, free and open to everyone.” Himschoot said that the problem language would be deleted from the draft ordinance, with the approval of the rest of the assembly. Another likely change will be eliminating the highest proposed tax rate of 10-percent on marijuana, and capping it at 8-percent. Sitka already charges a sales tax which alternates seasonally between 5- and 6-percent. Cannabis products would be exempt from…

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Source : Alaska: Sitka School Board endorses plan to tax cannabis to support student activities

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