The Oregon Department of Revenue Has Cash Payment “Issues”

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Opinion:

By William “Stash” Jones

 

October 20, 2016 – The Oregon Department of Revenue has a cash flow problem, they are now overrun with people paying cash from the cannabis industry. This has apparently put a strain on their system, which is not designed to allow the time to count out large cash payments – they usually take checks.

According to a memo released by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission, ODR has recently experienced “issues” with payment times, especially late in the month when the bulk of taxpayers come in to pay. When cash payments are made (almost all of them by cannabis businesses) that are substantially larger tn they planned for, or the taxpayer arrives late, it can make them run over their allotted time and inconvenience others.

From the Oregon Department of Revenue “Marijuana Tax Administration” memo:

“Appointment slots late in the month are usually all full, which leaves us with little to no time between appointments. When someone’s appointment runs over the scheduled time because they arrived late or brought a much larger payment than we planned for, it puts us behind schedule for the rest of the day. This inconveniences our other taxpayers.”

They also had a few tips for the cash taxpayers to help payment processing be more efficient – just to keep in mind:

1.If possible, please schedule your appointment for earlier in the month. This is particularly important if you’re paying on behalf of multiple locations because it will take longer for us to process multiple payments.
2. Please schedule your appointment at least 48 hours in advance. Consider setting up your next monthly appointment at the end of your current month’s appointment.
3. Please arrive at the scheduled time with your payment voucher filled out fully and correctly.
4. Please bring the money sorted by denomination, facing the same way, and ready to be counted.

But, in the end, they remind folks that they have the right to refuse service if folks don’t abide by the rules in OAR 150-305-0018.

Oh, and by the way, according to the rules, folks, “On or after January 1, 2017, all deposits or payments of currency must be delivered to the department’s main building at 955 Center Street, NE, Salem, Oregon 97301. No deposits or payments of currency will be accepted at any other location.”

And, don’t be late! (see #3 above)

Some rhetorical questions for Oregon political and administrative leaders to make my point.

Call me a big government liberal if you must, but can’t they just hire more people to handle the overload of new found revenue from the cannabis industry?! I mean, aren’t they basically swimming in millions of more dollars in revenue, with an unknown upper limit? What are they expecting to happen? Instead of bitching about the problem…through the OLCC…in a memo, why not form a state run bank for these businesses to have a safe place to deposit their money? Why can’t the state of Oregon be proactive and forward thinking, for once, with the cannabis industry? Why can’t the state of Oregon be an example to other states, and the federal government, on how to handle the new and emerging cannabis industry? Is there a valid reason that Oregon’s elected and appointed leaders could not provide solutions to problems rather than cramming through ridiculous rules on cannabis strain names and exit bag requirements?

No, instead, we have a Revenue Department that can’t handle the revenue. Is that even a thing?

Apparently it is now. Anything is possible in the new wacky world of legal weed!

 

OLCC Email:

The following message is from our partners at the Department of Revenue.

As many of you know, the Department of Revenue has been processing cash payments of marijuana taxes because many businesses have struggled to get access to conventional banking services. As the market continues to grow, we anticipate an increase in cash payments over the next several months.

Because we’re expecting more cash payments, we need the entire payment process to go as smoothly as possible, but we’ve been running into some issues. For example, appointment slots late in the month are usually all full, which leaves us with little to no time between appointments. When someone’s appointment runs over the scheduled time because they arrived late or brought a much larger payment than we planned for, it puts us behind schedule for the rest of the day. This inconveniences our other taxpayers.

To help us make payment processing more efficient, keep these tips in mind:

1. If possible, please schedule your appointment for earlier in the month. This is particularly important if you’re paying on behalf of multiple locations because it will take longer for us to process multiple payments.
2. Please schedule your appointment at least 48 hours in advance. Consider setting up your next monthly appointment at the end of your current month’s appointment.
3. Please arrive at the scheduled time with your payment voucher filled out fully and correctly.
4. Please bring the money sorted by denomination, facing the same way, and ready to be counted.

We don’t want to turn away any payments, but we also want to ensure that our service is safe, accurate, and quick. We also reserve the right to reject payments from businesses that don’t abide by the requirements in OAR 150-305-0018. (http://arcweb.sos.state.or.us/pages/rules/oars_100/oar_150/150_305.html).

We appreciate your cooperation!

Marijuana Tax Administration
Oregon Dept. of Revenue
marijuanaTAX.DOR@oregon.gov
503-947-2597

© 2016 Oregon Cannabis Connection. All rights reserved.

 

William Stash Jones

William "Stash" Jones is a medical marijuana patient and medical cannabis advocate. He focuses on medical cannabis and its benefits, and believes that medical cannabis is the solution to many problems in medicine today.

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