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New Jersey Eliminates Medical Cannabis Sales Tax

Ed Knight

By Ed Knight

July 8, 2022

Shutterstock

Medical cannabis in

is officially tax free. 

As of July 1, medical cannabis patients in the Garden State no longer have to pay state sales tax on the marijuana or marijuana products they purchase. 

The elimination of the tax is just one component of a bill signed into law by New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy in 2019. 

Known as the

the law included several provisions intended to “dramatically reform New Jersey’s Medicinal Marijuana Program (MMP) and expand patient access to medical marijuana,” including the gradual phase out of the state sales tax on medical cannabis products. 

“Removing state sales tax on medicinal cannabis is consistent with Governor Murphy and the Legislature’s intent to prioritize patients and improve affordability,” Jeff Brown, the executive director of the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission,

in a press release last weekend.

Under Jake’s Law, the state of New Jersey phased out the state sales tax on medical cannabis over a three year period, lowering it to four percent in July of 2020, two percent in July of 2021, and then eliminating it entirely at the start of this month. 

“As the sales tax has been phased out from 4% to 2% and now to 0% patients have been able to spend less on their medicine, further ensuring patients are prioritized over recreational consumers,” Brown said in the press release last week. 

Sheila Oliver, Murphy’s lieutenant governor,

that the elimination of the state sales tax advances “our commitment to prioritize patients and improve affordability.”

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New Jersey Governor Signed Jake’s Law in 2019

Murphy, a Democrat now in his second term, signed the Jake Honig Compassionate Use Medical Cannabis Act into law in July of 2019.

“Today’s legislation creates a medical marijuana program that is modernized, compassionate, progressive, and meets the needs of patients,” Murphy said in a

after the bill signing. “I am proud to stand with my legislative partners as we break down barriers to ensure this life-changing medical treatment is affordable and accessible for those who need it most.”

Named for a late New Jersey child who suffered from Ewing sarcoma, Jake’s Law made a series of sweeping changes to the Garden State’s medical cannabis program. 

Michael Honig, the father of the bill’s namesake, lobbied for the reform after growing frustrated with the limitations imposed on the state’s medical cannabis law. 

“Advocates have waited for this, caregivers have waited for this, parents have waited for this, but most important: patients have waited for this,” Michael Honig said in a statement after the bill’s signing. “Among many things, what is so special and nearest to our hearts is that it completely lifts the ban for terminally ill patients. Now they can receive unlimited medication it will take to keep them comfortable as they end their life.”

Along with the elimination of the state sales tax on medical cannabis, Jake’s Law, among a host of other reforms, also raised the monthly limit from two ounces to three ounces, allowed adult patients to receive cannabis edibles that had previously only been allowed for patients who are children, authorized home delivery of medical cannabis and created the Cannabis Regulatory Commission, which assumed oversight of the state’s medical cannabis program.

“Today is a giant step forward, enabling us to provide much better patient service,” Brown said at the time. “These changes will break down barriers for patients, like ending the requirement that they need to see a physician every 90 days, and will improve access by allowing more health professionals – Physician Assistants and Advanced Practice Nurses – to authorize patients for medical marijuana. Because of this new law, more patients will be able to access and benefit from this therapy.”

Ed Knight

About The Author

Ed Knight

HIGH THERE MISSION

WE’RE A CREATIVE COMMUNITY — EXPLORING THE SCIENCE, CRAFT, AND CULTURE OF CANNABIS.
WE BELIEVE THAT WE HAVE A COLLECTIVE RESPONSIBILITY TOWARDS ERADICATING THE STIGMA, MISINFORMATION, AND INEQUITIES SURROUNDING THIS PLANT, SO WE CAN UNLOCK ITS TRUE POTENTIAL FOR ALL.

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