Pubdate: Wed, 03 Jan 2007
Source: Knoxville News-Sentinel (TN)
Copyright: 2007 The Knoxville News-Sentinel Co.
Bookmark: (Marijuana)
Bookmark: (Cocaine)
Bookmark: (Methamphetamine)


Tennessee collected almost $1.8 million in taxes on cocaine, crack,
moonshine and other "unauthorized substances" in 2006, the second year
the tax was in effect.

The $1,773,535 collected last year marked a 3.4 percent increase from

Drug dealers, moonshiners and other purveyors of controlled and
illicit substances are supposed to purchase tax stamps under the
2-year-old law, the state Department of Revenue said in a release.

The tax, dubbed the "crack tax" when enacted, has come under attack
from attorneys across the state because it is assessed against the
accused before their guilt or innocence was decided.

Sellers don't have to provide any identifying information in order to
get the tax stamp.

If a drug dealer is caught with unauthorized substances that don't
have stamps, however, the state moves to collect taxes on those
substances. The tax applies to substances including cocaine, crack,
methamphetamine, marijuana, moonshine and non-tax-paid liquor.

"The Department of Revenue continues to successfully administer the
unauthorized substances tax," Revenue Commissioner Loren L. Chumley
said in a statement.

"Our ongoing effective implementation of this tax plays a crucial role
in achieving the law's primary purpose: to channel funds collected
into local law enforcement agencies to help combat, prevent and reduce
drug crimes in Tennessee."
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