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June 10, 2016

Running out of time and options to raise money to address the homelessness crisis, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors turned Tuesday to a new funding source: weed. The supervisors agreed to seek voters’ approval in November for a gross receipts tax of up to 10% on marijuana businesses. But it’s far from clear that marijuana could — or should — be the pot of gold that county leaders are hoping for.

The board has spent the last several months trying to figure out a way to raise the $450 million a year that county officials estimate they need to provide outreach, mental health services, rental subsidies and housing for the homeless. But proposal after proposal has been taken off the table — Gov. Jerry Brown wouldn’t support changing state law to allow the county to consider a tax on millionaires,...