Medical Marijuana dispensary(Photo: KREM)
SPOKANE, Wash. — A Spokane woman who owned a medical marijuana dispensary has been fighting the Department of Revenue over taxes.
She insists she should not have to pay tax on medical marijuana sales because it is medicine.
DEA agents raided Club Compassion four years ago. They warned the owner, Rhonda Duncan, at the time to shut down but she refused.
Duncan then started a fight with the Department of Revenue about whether she owed the agency sales tax.
“It’s been rough, my bank accounts been seized, I can’t have a bank account until this has been resolved,” said Duncan.
The agency said that medical marijuana was a product that needed to be taxed. She believes the tax should not be required because it is medicine. She has lost $60,000 and struggled to make ends meet.
“It was just a witch hunt and it put me through so much stress,” said Duncan.
A court ruling said medical marijuana sales are exempt from retail sales, reversing what the Department of Revenue told her for years.
Duncan’s business used to be located at the intersection of Nevada and Bridgeport and it is no longer open. She hopes to get back into the medical marijuana business and help her patients once again.
She hopes other dispensaries can make the same argument who also faced the same challenge from the Department of Revenue.
Duncan said that getting back into business may require getting into the recreational side of marijuana. She expects the medical and recreational side to become one industry in the future.
“I want to do everything I can for patients from the inside out,” said Duncan.
She still has to prepare for the Department of Revenue to appeal the decision. She will also have to try and get her money back before she can start up again.
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