ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Albuquerque City Council is considering a new way to use cannabis tax revenue.
“We want to make sure those funds coming to the City of Albuquerque – that they’re appropriated correctly,” said Councilor Klarissa Peña.
The councilor is sponsoring the bill which aims to create the Marijuana Equity and Community Reinvestment Fund. The City averages $2.8 million per year from cannabis tax revenue. The bill, if passed, would put all of that into that reinvestment fund.
“Currently, it’s not appropriated. It’s just going to the general fund,” she said, noting the goal is to give back to people who were negatively impacted when pot was illegal.
In December 2021, the City hired consultants who held working groups to see how the cannabis revenue could be best used. This proposal came out of that group’s recommendations.
“We’re going to use that fund for prevention programs, education programs, and we’re also going to use it for treatment and housing,” said Peña.
It also would include programs for people trying to re-enter society after being in jail or prison.
According to the bill, the fund would also make it easier for the City to report how pot tax revenue is being spent, which is required by the state Tax and Revenue Department.
Councilor Peña said it’s all about giving back.
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“Now that it’s legal, we want to provide opportunities to people who have been impacted,” said Peña.
According to the City’s website, the bill will be introduced at Monday’s City Council meeting.