- Associated Press - Wednesday, January 21, 2015

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) - A proposal being introduced in Olympia would cut Washington’s heavy taxes on legal marijuana.

The state currently imposes an excise tax of 25 percent at least twice, and up to three times - not including state and local sales taxes. But licensed pot businesses say those taxes are so burdensome that they can’t compete with untaxed or lesser-taxed black market or medical marijuana sales.

State Sen. Brian Hatfield, a Democrat from Raymond, is expected to file a bill Thursday to change the tax structure to one 37 percent excise tax levied at the point of sale. That amount would drop to 30 percent in mid-2017 and 25 percent in mid-2019.

Hatfield’s co-sponsor on the measure is leading Republican Ann Rivers of La Center, who has already introduced a bill to overhaul medical marijuana in Washington state.

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