Monday, August 18, 2014

No Farm Status for Medical Marijuana Grow-Ops

Existing and future federally licensed medical marijuana businesses won’t be getting a break on their property taxes.

The provincial government has excluded medical marijuana businesses from its list of agricultural uses.

This means legal grow-ops won’t qualify for farm classification for assessment and property tax purposes.

The provincial government made this decision to ensure municipalities don’t lose property tax revenues.

Medical-marijuana production is allowed as a farm use within the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR) by the BC government. But, the BC Assessment Act, sec. 23, specifies which farm uses qualify for farm classification for property tax assessment purposes.

Farm classification typically lowers the value of the land which:
• reduces property tax rates, and
• provides PST exemptions.

Wineries, farms, ranch tourism operations and sand and gravel pits are excluded from farm classification.

Medical marijuana is a federally-regulated narcotic produced by licensed operators.

There are five federally licensed facilities in BC and the number is expected to increase in the coming years.

Source: REBGV