Cannabis Business Tax

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Cannabis Business Tax

As approved by the voters of the City of Santa Cruz on November 4, 2014 and November 8, 2016, any and all cannabis businesses operating in the City are required to pay the City's Cannabis Business Tax.  Pursuant to Chapter 5.07 of the City of Santa Cruz Municipal Code and Ordinance No. 2018-16, adopted November 13, 2018, the Cannabis Business Tax (CBT) rate structure will be amended on January 1, 2019 as follows:

  • Testing laboratories shall pay a CBT on one percent (1%) of gross receipts
  • Cannabis distribution businesses shall pay a CBT of two percent (2%) of gross receipts
  • All other cannabis businesses shall pay a CBT of eight percent (8%)
  • Combined cannabis businesses that include distribution with other cannabis business types shall pay a CBT of eight percent (8%) except on gross receipts derived from distribution of cannabis products purchased by a non-affiliated business and resold to a retail business or to a manufacturer in the same form they were purchased shall be taxed at a rate of two percent (2%)

Payment of the Cannabis Business Tax in no way authorizes or legalizes business activities that are otherwise unlawful in the City of Santa Cruz. For further information on the Cannabis Business Tax, see the City's Municipal Code.  Information about cannabis licenses and regulations can be obtained from the Planning and Community Development Department.