Will Wash.'s legal pot taxes go to health care?

Will Wash.'s legal pot taxes go to health care?

Will Wash.'s legal pot taxes go to health care?

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by Associated Press

kgw.com

Posted on October 31, 2013 at 11:58 AM

SEATTLE (AP) -- One selling point of Washington's new legal marijuana law was that a huge chunk of pot-related tax revenue would be devoted to health coverage for low-income residents.

But it's not clear the money will go to health care after all. Under the federal Affordable Care Act, also known as "Obamacare," the intended recipient of the pot taxes -- Washington's Basic Health Plan -- is being eliminated. The plan is being absorbed by Medicaid.

As a result, the Legislature will need to take action if it wants to rededicate the money intended for the Basic Health Plan, which could amount to tens of millions of dollars a year.

One of the sponsors of the legal pot law, retired state Rep. Mary Lou Dickerson of Seattle, says she'd like to see the Legislature dedicate the revenue to mental health programs.

 

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