420 with CNW – US Virgin Islands Governor Tweaks Cannabis Legalization Bill to Boost Tax Income

The coronavirus crisis has dealt the world such a massive economic blow that it will take years for it to recover. Millions of people are already out of a job, and experts say that half of the global workforce, 1.6 billion people, are in danger of losing their livelihoods. Understandably, governments are scrambling to find ways to boost their economies.

For some, this has led to talks of legalizing marijuana. One of the biggest arguments for legalizing marijuana has been to earn tax revenue, with states like Colorado that have thriving legal cannabis programs earning big bucks. Governor Albert Bryan Jr. of the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI), who has long been a proponent for legalizing cannabis, has also gone this route.

He plans on sending a revised marijuana legalization bill to the legislature in hopes that it will be passed in time to generate much-needed tax revenue. With coronavirus measures in place, commerce has all but slowed down, greatly reducing the amount of tax revenue governments are subject to receive. However, cannabis is considered essential, and shops would be able to continue operations during the lockdown.

“We have taken the time to gather further public input as well as address the concerns of the individual legislators. As the economic disaster the last few weeks has affected GERS (Government Employees Retirement System) greatly, it is our hope that we can have a greater sense of exigency in implementing all the things that can help us regain solvency,” he said during an update on the coronavirus crisis.

“Once again, it is not the panacea, but certainly cutting the annuity of retirees by 30% cannot be the path either.”

The territory’s government retirement program for public sector retirees had been in trouble even before the coronavirus outbreak. Governor Bryan had proposed legalizing marijuana to help fund GERS through tax revenue from cannabis sales. However, several legislators voiced their opposition, stating that the tax revenue earned from a legal cannabis program wouldn’t be enough to fund the retirement program.

The proposal would amend the territory’s medical marijuana law to allow adults 21 and older to purchase and cultivate marijuana. The government estimates an annual tax revenue of over $20 million, with marijuana being taxed at 30%. 85% of the funds would be used to fund the government retirement system, 20% to fund senior citizen initiatives and 5% to fund the territory’s Office of Cannabis Regulations.

It would be interesting to hear what sector players like The Supreme Cannabis Company Inc. (TSX: FIRE) (OTCQX: SPRWF) think about the chances of a legal marijuana market being up and running in the U.S. Virgin Islands in time to rescue the economy from the effects of COVID-19.

About CNW420

CNW420 spotlights the latest developments in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry through the release of two informative articles each business day. Our concise, informative content serves as a gateway for investors interested in the legalized cannabis sector and provides updates on how regulatory developments may impact financial markets. Articles are released each business day at 4:20 a.m. and 4:20 p.m. Eastern – our tribute to the time synonymous with cannabis culture. If marijuana and the burgeoning industry surrounding it are on your radar, CNW420 is for you! Check back daily to stay up-to-date on the latest milestones in the fast -changing world of cannabis.

To receive instant SMS alerts, text CANNABIS to 21000 (U.S. Mobile Phones Only)

For more information please visit https://www.CNW420.com

Please see full terms of use and disclaimers on the CannabisNewsWire website applicable to all content provided by CNW420, wherever published or re-published: http://CNW.fm/Disclaimer

Do you have questions or are you interested in working with CNW420? Ask our Editor

Denver, Colorado
303.498.7722 Office

CNW420 is part of the InvestorBrandNetwork.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s