The recreational sale of marijuana is currently a felony in the state of New York. With the state’s budget in dire need of revenue, Governor Andrew Cuomo is reportedly planning to make legalization a reality this year. The move, which is expected to generate upwards of $400 million in new tax revenue, is significant, as the state’s budget deficit currently stands at $5.2 billion. With legalization, New York will join Washington D.C., and the states of Colorado and Washington in legalizing the use of marijuana for recreational purposes.
On Wednesday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a bill that could legalize marijuana use in the state, one of a handful of states that has embarked on a path toward legalization of recreational and medical marijuana.
New York is the latest state to take up the fight for legalization, as they consider legalizing recreational marijuana this year. “The State’s leaders should be focused on medical marijuana and creating a system for the safe distribution of the drug,” said Bill Caruso, a spokesman for the Drug Policy Alliance, “instead of trying to cash-in with a recreational marijuana market that has a limited and weak safety profile.”Source: Shutterstock New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has said that recreational cannabis will be legalized in the state in 2021. This will bring in revenue and end the ill-fated ban on the product that subjected so many people of color to excessive police action and incarceration, the governor tweeted. We will legalize recreational cannabis for adults, joining the 15 states that have already done so. This will bring in revenue and end the failed product ban that exposed so many people of color to excessive police brutality and harassment. #SOTS2021 – Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) January 11, 2021 When legalization occurs this year, New York will become the 15th state where the product will be available for recreational use.
First examination of legalization in New York in 2018
Governor Cuomo has been advocating for the legalization of marijuana for years. In 2018, the New York City Department of Health, along with several other agencies, examined cannabis and the idea of legalizing it. The impact assessments have shown that the positive aspects far outweigh the negative aspects regarding the possibility of legal adult use of marijuana. The study also concludes that the cannabis ban of the past century has not achieved the public health and safety objectives it was supposed to. Instead, it has led to wrongful arrests and convictions, particularly in communities of color. The report contains strong language and many arguments in favour of legalisation. Legalizing marijuana could lift restrictions on research in New York State, allowing the state to learn more about its benefits and risks. In addition, New York State is becoming one of the largest regulated marijuana markets. Thus, New York State can generate significant tax revenue that can be used to support program initiatives in areas such as health care, education, transportation, research, law enforcement, and workforce development. Tax revenues can also support health care and employment. Finally, marijuana legalization would address an important social justice issue by reducing the disproportionate criminalization and incarceration of certain racial and ethnic minority communities. Despite these results, marijuana did not become available for recreational use in New York this year.
Schedule and details of the pandemic
Legislative leaders backed the idea in 2019, but dropped it when they couldn’t agree on the details. This is largely due to the debate over the allocation of the tax revenue this product will generate. Governor Andrew Cuomo has decided to raise the issue again in next year’s legislative agenda. In January 2020, Governor Cuomo promised to legalize marijuana for recreational use. He hopes to use the money to eliminate a $6 billion budget deficit and believes the legalization project could be a way to reform the criminal justice system. But the coronavirus put an end to those plans, as it did to everything else. Again, disputes over who should be allowed to sell and distribute the product and how the profits made should be used led to the failure of the effort. Now Governor Cuomo says 2021 is the year of cannabis. In his State of the Union, he outlined his plan to create a cannabis regulatory agency that would regulate all types of cannabis, including recreational and medicinal cannabis. The state estimates that legalization would generate $300 million in tax revenue at a time when the state budget needs a boost.
Eliminate the impact of prohibitions on minority communities
The governor also hopes to use legalization to address the effects of the war on drugs on communities of color. Cuomo’s office promises that the licensing strategy he has developed will specifically target areas disproportionately affected by this bizarre war. The state says it will help entrepreneurs in these communities get started. Speaking to the media, Governor Cuomo wrote, Despite the many challenges New York City faces as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, they have also created a number of opportunities to right long-standing wrongs and build a better New York City than ever before. Legalizing and regulating the adult-use cannabis market will not only provide a much-needed revenue opportunity, but will also allow us to directly support the people and communities who have been hardest hit by decades of cannabis prohibition. Usually, legalization comes on the ballot when initiatives amend the constitution months in advance to make cannabis legal and develop laws to regulate it. Governor Cuomo, even after two years of failure, still believes legalization should be done through state budget laws. This method should streamline the process. Of course, it didn’t really work. The legislature has also tried to act in the usual way. Senator Liz Krueger of New York is the author of Senate Bill S1527C, which would introduce the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act. It will allow people 21 and older to grow and use marijuana. It would also redefine marijuana, remove references to the drug from seizures and amend laws that punish use of the product with fines or imprisonment. Excise taxes, business licenses, the creation of the New York State Cannabis Revenue Fund and funding for public education, substance abuse treatment and community reinvestment grants are also discussed. To date, the bill is still pending before the committee.
Impact of data on Cuomo’s decision
There are rumors that Governor Cuomo is trying to get the bill through a third time in November 2020. But the goal seems ambitious. The Citizens Budget Commission has published an analysis entitled Delving into the Weeds of Potential Recreational Marijuana Revenue, in which the researchers state that it typically takes up to three years for the government to benefit from new tax revenue. The report concludes, The experience of other states clearly demonstrates that it takes time to generate tax revenue from marijuana legalization, but the states that have begun legalization are now generating significant and consistent revenue. If New York legalizes and taxes recreational marijuana use by adults, it should be pragmatic in estimating revenue, transparent about the sources and uses of that revenue, and not use the revenue other than for administrative purposes and possibly for programs related to the consequences of use. Nevertheless, Governor Cuomo announced during his State of the Union address that he would be stepping up his legalization efforts. He said the new initiative is a continuation of the state’s efforts in recent years to promote legalization. The proposal reflects national standards and evolving best practices to promote responsible use by restricting the sale of cannabis products to adults 21 years of age and older and establishing strict quality and safety controls, including strict regulations on packaging, labeling, advertising, and testing of all cannabis products. Cannabis regulation also provides an opportunity to invest in research and focus resources on communities most affected by cannabis prohibition.The US is getting ready to change how it deals with marijuana, but it won’t be a complete makeover. The federal government still bans marijuana use and possession in the country. But, starting 1.01.18, it will become legal for adults 21 and older to use and possess up to an ounce of marijuana in public in the city of New York. This is a huge step for the country, which has long had a prohibition against marijuana.. Read more about latest news on legalization in ny and let us know what you think.
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