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November 8, 2016 — California General Election
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City of Cathedral City
Measure P - Majority Approval Required

To learn more about measures, follow the links for each tab in this section. For most screenreaders, you can hit Return or Enter to enter a tab and read the content within.

Election Results


10,605 votes yes (76.26%)

3,301 votes no (23.74%)

100% of precincts reporting (14/14).

13,906 ballots counted.

To help fund municipal services, including police protection and crime suppression services, fire prevention and suppression services, emergency medical services, park, recreation, and library facilities and services, shall an ordinance amending the existing cannabis tax be adopted that would expand the tax to apply to recreational cannabis, if legalized, and apply a tax of $25 per square foot of cultivation space, and $1.00 for every gram of cannabis concentrate and every unit of cannabis-infused product?

What is this proposal?

Measure Details — Official information about this measure

Impartial analysis / Proposal

City Attorney, City of Cathedral City

The City of Cathedral City placed Measure P on the ballot seeking voter approval of an amendment to the existing medical cannabis tax (the “tax”) to be used for general municipal services and all lawful public purposes of the City of Cathedral City.

In 2014, the voters of the City approved Ordinance No. 742, establishing a tax of up to fifteen cents for every dollar, or fraction thereof, of gross receipts received by a “cannabis or marijuana collective and/or dispensary,” and authorizing the City Council to impose the tax in a lower amount. The tax is currently in effect and applies to all medical cannabis businesses in the City. On August 26, 2015, the City Council adopted Resolution No. 2015-50 imposing the tax at the lower rate of ten cents for every dollar, or fraction thereof, of gross receipts.

At the time Ordinance No. 742 was approved, medical cannabis dispensaries were the only type of medical cannabis business permitted in the City. Subsequently, the City Council has adopted  ordinances expanding the types of medical cannabis businesses that may operate in the City, including but not limited to medical cannabis cultivation and manufacturing. If approved, Measure P would amend how the tax is calculated for cultivation and manufacturing activities. The maximum tax on dispensaries and other types of cannabis businesses would not be changed from what was approved by the voters in Ordinance No. 742.

If Measure P is approved, the maximum tax on cultivation will be twenty-five dollars per square foot, or fractional part thereof, of the gross square footage of any building, facility or site where cannabis cultivation and related activities occur. Square footage that is used for any cannabis business activities that are separately taxed is not included in the taxable square footage. For example, if a building houses both cultivation and a dispensary, the square footage of the dispensary portion of the building will not be included in the calculation of the cultivation tax. The maximum tax on manufacturing will be one dollar for each gram of cannabis concentrate produced or manufactured, and one dollar for each unit of cannabis-infused product other than cannabis concentrate produced or manufactured and packaged or intended for individual sale. Beginning on July 1, 2017, the maximum cultivation and manufacturing taxes will be automatically adjusted based on the average percentage change in the Consumer Price Index for “all urban consumers” in the Los Angeles-Anaheim-Riverside area for the calendar year which ends in the previous fiscal year.

The City Council retains the right to impose the tax in an amount that is lower than what is approved by the voters in Measure P. Except for the Consumer Price Index adjustment, the maximum tax rates cannot be increased without a vote of the people. The City Council may also establish exemptions, incentives, or other reductions, and penalties and interest charges or assessments for failure to pay the tax in a timely manner.

Additionally, Measure P provides that if recreational or other nonmedical use or consumption of cannabis is legalized or decriminalized in California, the tax shall apply to cannabis businesses engaged in commercial cannabis activity for non-medical uses.


City Attorney, City of Cathedral City

The above statement is an impartial analysis of Measure P.  If you desire a copy of the ordinance or measure, please call the elections official’s office at (760) 770-0322 and a copy will be mailed at no cost to you. You may also view the Full Text of Measure P at

Published Arguments — Arguments for and against the ballot measure

Arguments FOR

In 2014 the voters approved a tax on the retail sales of medical marijuana in Cathedral. In 2016 the City Council authorized additional businesses related to cannabis products including cultivation, manufacturing, testing and distribution. A review of appropriate and effective methods for taxing these additional businesses indicated that different methods for taxation should be created separate from the approach for retail sales. This measure defines those different approaches as follows: retail sales - maximum rate of $.15 on each $1.00 in sales; cultivation — use tax of a maximum of $25 per gross square foot of building space; manufactured products — use tax at a maximum of $1.00 per gram or ounce of manufactured product.

These would be the maximum rate the city could charge, never more without coming back to the voters for approval.

These methods are similar with the approach used in other cities and states for these types of businesses and allows for efficient and effective auditing processes by the Cathedral City Finance staff.

Monies collected from these measures will be used to help fund programs like the police and fire department and youth recreation services. The City Council urges your YES vote on Measure P.


Stanley E. Henry, Mayor

Gregory Pettis, Mayor Pro Tem

Shelley Kaplan, Councilmember

John Aguilar, Councilmember

Mark Carnevale, Councilmember

Arguments AGAINST


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