New Jersey Update: Cannabis Deductions Bill Heads To Senate, Expungement Clinics In Trenton


Under the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) code 280E, the marijuana industry remains blocked from taking federal deductions, which precludes entities that illegally sell Schedule I or II drugs from key tax deductions in their federal filings.

However, as partial relief, the New Jersey Assembly passed a bill that would allow licensed cannabis businesses to deduct certain expenses on their state tax returns. The legislation, introduced by Assemblymember Annette Quijano (D) passed the House in a 60-6 vote.

What’s In The ‘Partial Remedy’ Legislation?

For the purposes of New Jersey’s tax code, a licensed cannabis company’s gross income “shall be determined without regard to section 280E of the [federal] Internal Revenue Code,” reads the legislation. And continued “shall apply to taxable years beginning on or after January 1 following enactment.”

Last month, the measure, which is now headed to the Senate for consideration, was amended in the Assembly Oversight, Reform and Federal Relations Committee. At that time, its members agreed to remove a previous provision that would have made only cannabis license holders with gross receipts less than $15 million eligible for state tax deductions, reported Marijuana Moment.

According to the Office of Legislative Services (OLS), “providing access to these deductions and credits may also help generate more economic activity by cannabis businesses,” and so “the State and local governments that tax cannabis businesses might indirectly realize an indeterminate amount of additional annual revenue.”

Expungement Clinics: A Social Equity Initiative

Expungement clinics are sites where people can come and get their records cleared of cannabis convictions as a result of the legislation decriminalizing cannabis in certain amounts.

Recently, a 29-year-old man who served a year and a half in prison for a marijuana-related offense headed to a local clinic in Trenton hoping to expunge his conviction, which he said has been holding him back from potential employers hiring him. “After they do a background check, I don’t hear back from them,” he said.

According to organizer Shamira English, the Trenton expungement clinic, now in its second year, was for anyone who needed assistance or had questions regarding their criminal record, including individuals with past marijuana charges.

Michael Hoffman, a lawyer who has been working in the expungement clinics throughout the state, said “the overall cannabis market can also be more proactive by marketing links to expungement services through their stores and on packages they sell.”

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Photo: Courtesy Of Matt Nelson On Unsplash


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