Mass. marijuana deal calls for up to 20 percent tax on pot sales

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BOSTON (AP) – An agreement between House and Senate negotiators on changes to the state’s voter-approved marijuana law will allow for a tax of up to 20 percent on retail pot sales.

Highlights of the deal were released Monday by the office of Sen. Patricia Jehlen, co-chair of a conference committee that spent several weeks trying to resolve differences between the two chambers.

The compromise language mostly splits the difference between a House proposal to raise the total tax on marijuana to 28 percent, and the Senate version of the bill which called for keeping the tax at a maximum of 12 percent.

Lawmakers also compromised on the dispute over local control of pot shops. In cities and towns where voters backed the November ballot question, a referendum would be required to ban or restrict retail marijuana stores.

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