Majority of Manitobans say marijuana revenue should go to municipalities

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Winnipeg, January 11, 2018 – The numbers are in, and they indicate strong support amongst Manitobans for sharing of revenue from the sale of marijuana with municipalities.

The Association of Manitoba Municipalities (AMM) recently commissioned a Probe Research poll asking how much, if any, of the revenue from marijuana should be earmarked for municipalities.

According to President Chris Goertzen, the AMM expects significant increases to policing and other costs to emerge from the legalization of cannabis. “We know there is some debate over where this new money should be spent,” he explains, “and we wanted to gauge how much Manitobans feel should go toward these increased costs for municipalities.”

Out of 1,000 respondents, 59% indicated that municipalities should get between one-half and all of the revenue from the sale of marijuana.

Only 24% of Manitobans felt municipalities should get less than one-half of the revenue, and 16% were unsure.

Federation of Canadian Municipalities President Jenny Gerbasi was also on hand to discuss cannabis revenuesharing. Late last year, the FCM advocated that one-third of cannabis excise tax revenues flow to municipalities. In response, the federal government agreed to release half of its share to the provinces specifically to support municipal costs. That step began a dialogue among orders of government to ensure municipalities have the right tools to implement this federal commitment from day one.

President Goertzen is encouraged by the results of the AMM’s poll. “These numbers show that Manitobans are concerned about the increased costs of cannabis legalization and their local government’s ability to pay for it,” he says.

“This is just another example of how municipalities deserve a “fair share” of revenues, and our citizens support this.”