Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Recreational Marijuana Bills Advance In Montana Legislature

Marijuana plants
By United States Fish and Wildlife Service [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Competing bills to regulate Montana’s forthcoming recreational marijuana program are advancing in the Legislature.

Facing a procedural deadline next Thursday, lawmakers are keeping several policies on the table as they debate how to tax and regulate recreational cannabis.

House Bill 701, backed by the governor, would institute a 20% tax on recreational marijuana, funneling most of the revenue to the state general fund. It would also reserve money for a proposed addiction and treatment program, as well as state parks, trail maintenance and non-game wildlife programs.

House Bill 670, offers a lower tax and uses two-thirds of the revenue to pay state employee pensions. The remainder would enter a trust fund to pay for the so-called economic and social costs of marijuana growing and use.

Lawmakers this week also passed a third proposal, House Bill 707, which would place a 20% tax on wholesale recreational cannabis sales instead of retail sales.

Legislators will debate the bills on the House floor in the coming days.