Follow us:

The Evergreen

Seattle Times coverage of pot policy, culture and lifestyle.

August 21, 2014 at 5:44 PM

Pot businesses pay July taxes; one brings box of cash

For marijuana businesses, Wednesday was the first deadline to pay their tax obligations to the Liquor Control Board. Pot businesses owed the state about $750,000 for July excise taxes, according to Liquor Control Board spokesman Brian Smith. Over the past several days, many have come to the Liquor Control Board’s offices to settle up.

With limited access to banking services, that can be complicated for some. Although most pot proprietors paid with personal checks, said Smith, about $120,000 came in cash. Smith said one pot proprietor came to the office and pulled cash out of a box to pay his taxes.

“We put a window in our front lobby,” said spokesman Smith, explaining the process. “You make a transaction through a window like you’re buying a movie ticket.”

Randy Simmons, the state’s marijuana project director at the Liquor Control Board, said the agency prepared for pot entrepreneurs bringing in the green. He said the agency had retrofit the building and built a secure cash room to protect the state’s tax haul. It doesn’t hurt that the agency is  next to the Washington State Patrol offices.

“Once the money gets here and we’ve counted it and receipted it, it goes to a safe and an armored car picks up the cash and takes it to the bank,” said Simmons.

Smith said the process has gone smoothly.

“It’s been business as usual even though this is an unusual business for us,” he said.

Smith said the agency was pleased so many businesses were able to pay by check.

“If people are writing big checks for business, it makes me think they’ve got a bank account somewhere,” said Smith. “It suggests people are finding banking solutions.”

Comments | More in News | Topics: brian smith, liquor control board, Randy Simmons

COMMENTS

No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.



The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.


Advertising
The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►