New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed legislation legalizing adult-use cannabis in the state, Wednesday.
The bill establishes the Office of Cannibis Management to implement a regulatory framework for medical, adult-use, and cannabinoid hemp. The legislation provides licensing for marijuana producers, distributors, retailers, and other actors in the cannabis market, and creates a social and economic equity program to assist individuals disproportionately impacted by cannabis enforcement that want to participate in the industry.
Tax collections from the adult-use cannabis program are projected to reach $350 million annually and there is the potential to create 30,000 to 60,000 new jobs across the state.
“This is a historic day in New York—one that rights the wrongs of the past by putting an end to harsh prison sentences, embraces an industry that will grow the state’s economy, and prioritizes marginalized communities so those that have suffered the most will be the first to reap the benefits,” Governor Cuomo said in a statement. “This was one of my top priorities in this year’s State of the State agenda and I’m proud these comprehensive reforms address and balance the social equity, safety, and economic impacts of legal adult-use cannabis. I thank both the Leader and the Speaker, and the tireless advocacy of so many for helping make today’s historic day possible.”