New York Governor Says Recreational Marijuana Bill Will Pass Sometime in 2019

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notsofasteddie
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New York Governor Says Recreational Marijuana Bill Will Pass Sometime in 2019

Post by notsofasteddie » Tue 27th Nov 2018 09:42 pm

New York Governor Says Recreational Marijuana Bill Will Pass Sometime in 2019


By Joseph Misulonas
Nov 21, 2018

Image

New York will legalize recreational marijuana in 2019, at least if you believe the state's governor.

Governor Andrew Cuomo said at a public appearance yesterday that he expects the state to legalize recreational marijuana at some point in 2019. However his statement lacked any specifics beyond that.

"We now have a working group that is putting together a piece of legislation that would do it, because the devil is in the details: How do you do it, where do you do it, what are the ages, etc.? What is New Jersey doing? What has Massachusetts done," Cuomo said. "So that legislation is being crafted. I expect it to be introduced next year. The when and the how, we're not clear."

Cuomo's made a huge change in stance towards marijuana in the past year. The governor previously opposed efforts to legalize cannabis in New York, but around a year ago began warming to the idea. Now he's gone so far to officially endorse legalizing recreational marijuana and pushing for the state to address the issue.

So while we may not have an exact date, we do know we can expect a bill at some point next year.



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notsofasteddie
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Re: New York Governor Says Recreational Marijuana Bill Will Pass Sometime in 2019

Post by notsofasteddie » Wed 12th Dec 2018 01:35 pm

Recreational marijuana could come to New York State in 2019

"The positive effects of a regulated marijuana market in New York State outweigh the potential negative impacts," the New York Department of Health states.


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Governor Andrew Cuomo speaks during a news conference in New York on Nov. 13, 2018.
Jeenah Moon / Reuters file


By Dennis Romero
Dec. 11, 2018


Cannabis legalization advocates expect New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo to call on the legislature to legalize recreational marijuana during his first budget address in 2019.

"We're drafting legislation," Rich Azzopardi, a spokesman for the governor, told NBC News on Tuesday, when asked about decriminalizing weed.

The New York Post first reported earlier Tuesday that the governor's next budget address would include the introduction of a pot-legalization plan — but Azzopardi downplayed that news by noting that "in August we appointed a 16 member working group to draft legislation and hold public hearings."

Cuomo got the ball rolling for legalization earlier this year by launching a working group to make legislative recommendations based on a multi-agency study on "regulated marijuana" unveiled in July.

The multi-agency study that was released in summer concluded, "The positive effects of a regulated marijuana market in New York State outweigh the potential negative impacts," according to a summary.

Kassandra Frederique, New York State director of the Drug Policy Alliance (DPA), said the group is urging the governor and lawmakers to make a lot of things right with recreational legalization.

The DPA would like to see minor marijuana convictions expunged and cannabis business opportunities made abundant in minority communities disproportionately targeted by drug enforcement.

"There’s a lot to hope for in the legislative session," she said. "I think it puts the governor's office in the hot seat. What they put forward is supposed to be reflective of what they heard" from the working group.

"We're ready with a checklist to hold them accountable," Frederique said.

She was at a two-day DPA conference in Albany where experts from around the nation were discussing the best pathways to recreational legalization in New York.

Critics of legalization say proponents' enthusiasm should be curbed. "Legalization is never a done deal, and it’s very hard to get through at the end of the day," Kevin Sabet, president of the group Smart Approaches to Marijuana, said via email.

The group, which has opposed legalization in states like Colorado, opened an office in New York City four years ago.

"We have already assembled multiple opposition groups and individuals," he said. "I think the marijuana industry greatly underestimates what we can do and, frankly, that works to our advantage."

New York's own Democratic governor wasn't always on board: In 2017 Cuomo called marijuana a "gateway drug" that can lead people to use harder narcotics. But a lot has changed since then, and so has his attitude.

"We must thoroughly consider all aspects of a regulated marijuana program, including its impact on public health, criminal justice and State revenue, and mitigate any potential risks associated with it," Cuomo said in a statement in August.

Thirty-three states and the District of Columbia have approved some form of legalization, and in November, Michigan became the 10th state to go recreational.

In Albany, New York's capital, Democrats won control of the upper house in November, and the Assembly remains in the hands of that party, where drug reform has seen some momentum.

"We need to move beyond our completely broken prohibition model on marijuana to a sensible tax-and-regulate model," Assembly Health Committee Chair Richard N. Gottfried, D-Manhattan, said via email.

"Continued criminalization does not prevent marijuana use but destroys the lives of thousands of people a year and creates an illegal drug market that costs millions of dollars in law enforcement and other resources while disproportionately affecting minority communities," he said. "I look forward to working with the Governor and the new Senate leadership on legislation to correct this historic abuse of the drug war."

Medical marijuana became legally available to a very limited category of New York patients in 2016. The DPA wants recreational pot to be available to all state residents 21 and older.

"We’re in that moment where we can’t afford incrementalism," Frederique said. "I’m look forward to this being a priority issue for the governor’s office."



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AudioKush
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Re: New York Governor Says Recreational Marijuana Bill Will Pass Sometime in 2019

Post by AudioKush » Sat 9th Mar 2019 02:38 pm

Legalizing Recreational Marijuana In NY Could Be Delayed

1 March 2019 https://www.wwnytv.com

The legalization of recreational marijuana may not come as soon as expected.

Governor Andrew Cuomo included it in his budget as a way to get it passed, but with the budget deadline just a month away, many officials on the state and local levels are saying they don't believe it will end up in the budget.

"As far as what I'm hearing right now is this will be handled separately," said Scott Gray, chair of the Jefferson County Board of Legislators.

Last month, Speaker of the Assembly Carl Heastie said in a tweet he didn't think there was enough time to come up with regulations, deal with economic impact on communities and the criminal justice aspects.

The New York State Association of Counties has been meeting with the state Legislature on this issue and the executive director says he believes conflicting viewpoints are creating gridlock and confusion in Albany.

"There continues to be a reluctance by the state Legislature to take this up in the next four weeks that we have to enact the state budget. It appears to be too comprehensive, too much too soon for the state Legislature," said Stephen Acquario, executive director of New York State Association of Counties.

While the legislation process continues, local governments want make sure they are heard.

The Association of Counties is urging the state to increase the local sales tax on marijuana from a proposed 2 percent to 4 percent, which is what counties currently collect on other items.

The hope is the revenue would offset local governments costs associated with legalization.

"We are reminding the state to include adequate resources, direct taxation back to the affected local governments so we can best serve our communities and protect our people," said Acquario.

Gray says if marijuana is legalized, there will be countywide effects, especially on departments like law enforcement and public health.

"A variety of our departments will be impacted, how to quantify that right now is yet to be seen, but so there will be some financial impacts to the county and whether the 2 percent covers it, probably not," he said.

We reached out to the governor's office on where legalizing marijuana stands and the response we got was that it continues to engage with the Legislature on this proposal.

https://www.wwnytv.com/story/40048520/l ... be-delayed

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horacehorsecollar
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Re: New York Governor Says Recreational Marijuana Bill Will Pass Sometime in 2019

Post by horacehorsecollar » Tue 19th Mar 2019 07:53 pm

This really sucks.... it's all over petty details that the New York legalization is being held up... I hope people can settle their squabbles soon, and enact the will of the people and LEGALIZE NOW!

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