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Anchorage collects first full month of marijuana sales tax revenue

  • Author: Laurel Andrews
  • Updated: March 10, 2017
  • Published March 10, 2017

Customers wait to enter Arctic Herbery on Dec. 15. Arctic Herbery was the first marijuana shop to open in Anchorage. (Loren Holmes / ADN archive 2016)

Four Anchorage marijuana shops generated $22,000 in sales tax revenue in January, a city official said.

January was Anchorage's first full month collecting marijuana tax revenue, but the total wasn't much greater than the December revenue.

The first Anchorage marijuana shop opened Dec. 15. Two more quickly followed. In December, $19,880 in sales tax was generated from those businesses, said Blyss Cruz, a manager in Anchorage's Treasury Division.

A marijuana sales tax of 5 percent was approved by Anchorage voters in April 2016. The tax is separate from the state excise tax of $50 per ounce of marijuana bud and $15 per ounce for other parts of the plant, which the grower pays to the state treasury.

Going into January, shops across the state faced supply shortages and either closed temporarily or shortened their hours. Only a few Anchorage growers had started producing, so all the Anchorage shops relied on marijuana from other parts of the state.

Facing lagging supply, the state's marijuana revenue dropped in January to just over $100,000.

Both state and local taxes are paid at the end of the following month, so January taxes were due at the end of February.

There are now six shops open in Anchorage, Cruz said.