Oklahoma patients pay one of the highest tax rates for medical marijuana in the country. As a result, the state’s young medical cannabis program is already generating substantial revenue. The numbers are eye-catching. In December alone, medical cannabis sales almost topped $1 million, collecting just under $70,000 in tax revenue—not including standard sales tax. But taxes aren’t the only source of medical cannabis revenue for Oklahoma. Money generated from licensing fees has vastly exceeded tax revenue. And it’s piqued some in the industry, leading to class action lawsuits. Are high tax rates and licensing fees hurting Oklahoma’s patients and businesses?
Oklahoma’s Medical Marijuana Program is Generating Significant Revenue in Taxes and Fees
Compared to the more than 30 states with some form of legal medical cannabis, Oklahoma’s program is one of the most costly to both patients and businesses. Medical cannabis sales are taxed at 7 percent, on top of standard sales tax, which hovers around 9 percent. That means patients are paying 16 cents on the dollar when they make medicinal purchases. The only other state that comes close is Washington, which in 2016 revised its tax code to impose an excise tax of 37 percent. But at the