Oakland to mass-produce marijuana. The city council decided to give the go-ahead to massive-mega-weed-marts, Tuesday night. The city is looking to kick down up to four permits for industrial-sized marijuana grow operations up to 100,000 square feet each. The council really plans to benefit financially after the legalization of herb. Proposition 19, which hits California ballots in November, could legalize the recreational use of herb…meaning more customers, more taxation…more money!
To effectively capitalize on cannabis applicants interested in opening one of the massive grows need to pony up $5,000 just to get the ball rolling as the city is charging for “administrative costs”. Applicants will also need to show they’ve got $3M worth of insurance and will also have to fork over an annual permit fee of $211,000.
On top of the administrative costs and fees and shit, Oakland California looks to reap the tax revenue from growing and selling weed in a post Legalization era by planning on raising its current 1.8% weed tax to as much as 12%. The four current dispensaries in Oakland generate $28 million worth of revenue a year and tax from all that cash already finds its way into city coffers.
Opposition to the government-enforced WalMart effect of weed say large factory farming will not only put a multitude of small-scale gardeners out of business, but it’ll completely reshape the marijuana culture much like Walmart has; leaving a trail of dead mom-and pop shops in its wake. Nowadays WalMart dictates where Americans shop, the products we all buy and the prices we pay. The industrialization of California’s largest cash crop, and you thought it was grapes, will similarly touch the lives of literally every American.
“Government should not choose the winners and losers but create a level playing field,” says our friend Steve DeAngelo of Oakland’s Harboside Health Center, the largest medical marijuana dispensary in the world. “Some people might prefer mass production, assembly-line cannabis that costs less. Others might prefer cannabis grown by a master gardener in a smaller plot. Let the market sort it out.”
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