New Mexico Pursues Unpaid Taxes From Cannabis Companies

The state agencies have not ruled out in-person compliance checks on delinquent businesses.

More than 100 marijuana license holders in New Mexico were delinquent on their state taxes, leading to an enforcement push, the state Department of Taxation and Revenue announced Wednesday.

In a news release, the agency noted that 80 marijuana business permit holders paid their tax bills once the department reached them over the summer, but more than 100 are still outstanding.

“Cannabis is a relatively new industry with many new players who may be struggling to get their businesses up and running,” Taxation and Revenue Secretary Stephanie Schardin Clarke said in a statement. “We are here to assist taxpayers to voluntarily comply with the tax law, but cannabis retailers must also make a good faith effort to comply.”

The agency said it can offer “managed audits, a voluntary program to help taxpayers resolve tax debts, and payment plans” to any companies that may be struggling with their tax bills.

New Mexico marijuana companies must be in good standing in order to renew their state permits, a process overseen by the state Regulation and Licensing Department. The Taxation and Revenue release noted that it works closely with its sister agency “to compare active cannabis license holders with other data sources to ensure compliance.”

The agencies could opt for “in person compliance checks” if the delinquent marijuana business licensees still refuse to pay their taxes after the initial notifications, according to the release.

To date, the state has collected more than $47 million in cannabis taxes.

The new tax enforcement push comes after the New Mexico Cannabis Control Division – a wing of the Regulation and Licensing Department – pledged stricter oversight earlier this year and began conducting hundreds of business site inspections.

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