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New York puts off legalizing marijuana, for now

3/31/20--Gov. Andrew Cuomo said legalizing recreational marijuana is not going to be part of the state budget this year. Cuomo made his comments as the budget deadline approached with no agreement on how to close a $15 billion budget gap, caused by the fallout from the coronavirus. Read

Push to legalize pot in New York still on

3/24/20--New York Gov. Andew Cuomo supports legalization. He said last month he will visit states that allow pot shops to research how the market is regulated. Those plans are now on hold due to the health crisis caused by the virus, but the governor offered no indication that he is stepping back from the legalization measure stitched into his proposed state budget package. Read

Who’s spending the most to legalize marijuana

2/2/20--Major marijuana players have been spending big to influence pot policy in New York. Most are multistate companies that already have a foothold in the Empire State through medical marijuana, and would likely have a leg up in the recreational market under the current proposals. Read

Editorial: Decriminalize marijuana, don’t legalize

5/10/19--The News Editorial Board of The Buffalo News believe that before the State Legislature ends its session in June, their first priority should be to decriminalize, not legalize, marijuana use by focusing on turning the penalties for pot use into financial ones rather than putting people behind bars. Read

New York City lawmakers ban pre-employment drug testing for marijuana

5/13/19--Many employers in New York City will no longer be able to test job applicants for marijuana or THC—the psychoactive ingredient in cannabis—under a rule that was just adopted in the city. The new mandate will take effect in 2020. Read

Brooklyn officials voice opposition to recreational pot legalization

3/24/19--Several elected officials voiced their opposition to a proposal to legalize recreational marijuana in the state. They say regulations are needed to address marijuana use in public areas the same way cigarettes are currently regulated. Yet, some Brooklyn residents cite health reasons as why marijuana should be legalized. Read

Legalized marijuana hits hurdles in Albany

3/21/19--The effort to regulate and tax adult-use marijuana has hit stumbling blocks in Albany amid disputes over revenue, who will have access to licenses, and an intensifying counteroffensive by marijuana opponents. Read  

Recreational marijuana: What schools fear most about the legalization in New York

3/7/19--At least one district in New York has issued a resolution in opposition of legalized marijuana, and statewide school organizations are increasingly raising concerns over New York's move toward recreational marijuana. Educators' criticisms focus largely on the potential impact on students already enticed by vaping, cigarettes, and opioids. Read

New York counties skeptical of marijuana legalization

2/25/29--As New York state moves forward with plans to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, some counties in the state are expressing skepticism and considering whether to “opt out” of recreational marijuana. If marijuana is legalized in New York, counties may be able to stop marijuana businesses from operating within their boundaries, according to WKBW Buffalo. Read

How New York is preparing for legal weed

2/21/19--New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has proposed the “Cannabis Regulation and Taxation Act” (CRTA), which would legalize marijuana for adults over 21, and create an Office of Cannabis Management (OCM) to oversee a new recreational marijuana program, as well as the existing medical program. Cuomo has said that he’d like to see state lawmakers vote on the bill in April, and if passed, it would be effective immediately, with retail sales starting early next year. Read

NYC lawmakers consider ban on pre-employment marijuana test

2/15/19--New York City lawmakers are considering banning pre-employment tests for marijuana. New York City councilman Jumaane D. Williams announced that he has filed legislation that would prevent employers from testing prospective employees for marijuana usage during the hiring process. Read

Area police chiefs announce opposition to marijuana legalization in New York State

2/15/19--Governor Andrew Cuomo wants New York State to legalize recreational adult-use marijuana in the next 45 days. On Friday, several area police chiefs came out and said they’ll work to curb the governor’s efforts. Cuomo has called for legal pot in the budget due on March 31st. The plan would also allow individual counties and larger cities to opt out of legal marijuana and ban sales outlets from opening. Read  

New York’s medical marijuana industry fears threat of legal recreational pot

2/13/19--New York supporters of medical marijuana claim that without protection for medical pot stores, they'll be driven out of business should recreational marijuana be legalized, as is likely. Gov. Andrew Cuomo unveiled his proposal for recreational pot last month. The medical industry argues it doesn't allow them to stay competitive. The governor's proposal is now being debated by the legislature, with an expected deal to be reached sometime before April. Read

County creates marijuana task force to prepare for state legalization

1/11/19--Nassau County Executive Laura Curran announced Thursday the creation of a task force to prepare for the anticipated state legalization of recreational marijuana. The task force will be co-chaired by county Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder and county Legislator Josh Lafazan (D-Syosset). According to Lafazan, the group intends to consult with experts and the community to compile a report that can be used to inform potential county legislation. Read

Thorny questions threaten to slow legal marijuana in New York

1/13/19--Efforts to legalize marijuana for recreational use in New York are gaining steam. Although there’s broad agreement on the idea of legalization, there’s no consensus on a long list of details that must be figured out first, and New York has a history of taking a slow, cautious approach when it comes to marijuana. Read

Marijuana: Cities, towns could opt-out under Andrew Cuomo’s plan

1/14/19--Cities and towns in New York would still be able to ban marijuana sales under Gov. Andrew Cuomo's soon-to-be-released plan to legalize the drug statewide. Cuomo is expected to unveil his full recreational marijuana proposal on Tuesday as part of his budget plan and State of the State address, which is set for 2 p.m. Read

Film festival aims to reduce marijuana stigma as New York moves closer to legalization

1/13/19--When the first NYC Cannabis Film Festival was held in 2015, organizers hoped to minimize the stigma surrounding marijuana use in the public's perception. Now, with recreational pot already legal in 10 states, this year's festival could be the last before New York becomes the latest state to lift its prohibition on the drug. The films appearing at the NYC Cannabis Film Festival are intended to depict a non-stereotypical view of marijuana culture, with some tackling other topics altogether. Read

With marijuana legalization likely, Long Island police caution about driving high

1/14/19--Long Island law enforcement is preparing for the legalization of recreational marijuana in New York, and officials say road safety should be a top priority. Nassau County Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder says part of the problem is re-educating police officers on how to identify and deal with drivers that are high. Nassau County created a Taskforce to study the impact of legalized pot. County Legislator and Taskforce Co-chair Joshua Lafazan says there should be harsh penalties for anyone caught driving impaired. Read

Marijuana legalization hearing includes … broccoli, bar fights and Bills games

11/19/18--During a statewide debate at Monday’s State Assembly public hearing on proposals to legalize, regulate, and tax the adult use of marijuana in New York State, Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn talked about vegetables and bar fights and State Assembly members brought up Buffalo Bills games in relation to their objection and support of marijuana. This was the second of four statewide public hearings scheduled by the Assembly. Read

Growing access to medical marijuana in NY

11/19/18--The Medical Marijuana program first started four years ago in New York and since its conception, it has grown considerably. The Department of Health released its two-year report outlining some of the successes of the program and ways it can grow. Read

Increase in fentanyl — responsible for 44 percent of New York City overdose deaths — has led to apprehension and caution

9/12/18--The findings of a new study, published in the International Journal of Drug Policy, demonstrate a high level of understanding among people who use drugs regarding ways to prevent an overdose and some adoption of these methods, but the researchers assert that more needs to be done to prevent overdoses. Read

NYPD change in marijuana arrest policy goes into effect

9/2/18--A new NYPD marijuana policy goes into effect Saturday to cut down on drug arrests in New York City. Police will put a stop to arresting people for smoking marijuana in public. Officials said the policy was implemented because most of these arrests have nothing to do with public safety. Read

The business of weed, from the medical marijuana industry to the black market

3/8/17--Whether its legal, illegal, medical or recreational, the marijuana industry means business. As lawmakers debate legalizing marijuana in New Jersey, the players who stand to be impacted -- from businesspeople already invested in the medical industry to black market dealers -- are keeping a close eye on how things develop. Read

Majority of N.Y. voters support legalizing and taxing pot: poll

11/27/17--Nearly two-thirds of New York voters support legalizing marijuana. Sixty two percent of New York voters said they supported making marijuana use legal for people 21 and older, with only 28% opposed, according to the poll commissioned by the Marijuana Policy Project Foundation and the Drug Policy Alliance. The poll also found that legalizing and taxing marijuana was, by far, the most popular way to erase New York’s looming budget deficit, with 60% of voters supporting it. Read

Lawmakers must legalize marijuana in New York to support racial and economic justice

11/27/17--According to a New York Daily News published editorial by Melissa Moore of the Drug Policy Alliance, New Yorkers have an opportunity to support racial and economic justice by shifting away from costly, racially biased, and unjust enforcement of marijuana laws. Instead, they can create a new, well-regulated, and inclusive marijuana industry in New York. How New York decides to reform marijuana laws provides an opportunity to repair the significant harms prohibition causes in vulnerable communities across the state by centering racial and economic justice. Read

Cuomo signs off on medical marijuana use for PTSD on Veterans Day

11/11/17--In honor of Veterans Day, Gov. Cuomo signed legislation allowing medicinal marijuana to be used to treat post-traumatic stress disorder. The bill allows military veterans, police officers, and firefighters, as well as survivors of domestic violence, access to the state’s burgeoning marijuana dispensary system. Read

Lawsuit targets medical marijuana expansion

9/21/17--Three companies that got state approval last month to produce medical marijuana in Orange and Ulster counties face a legal hurdle as they develop their plans: a lawsuit by five existing medical-marijuana businesses that aims to stop the expansion of their fledgling industry. Read

Drug Policy Alliance’s marijuana report is misleading 

8/4/17--A report released last month by the Drug Policy Alliance — a group committed to legalization — ignores how New York City Mayor de Blasio's administration’s approach to marijuana enforcement has resulted in both a safer city and fairer enforcement of state criminal law, which continues to prohibit recreational marijuana use. It also ignores the fact that New Yorkers makes tens of thousands of calls to 911 each year to complain about marijuana. Read

Smoking marijuana while black

7/17/17--Although the city of New York has reduced the number of arrests for low-level marijuana possession, black and Latino New Yorkers are far more likely to be arrested for smoking in public than whites, who are just as likely to use marijuana. African-Americans are arrested at 15 times the rate of whites in Staten Island and in Manhattan, and seven times the rate of whites in Queens. The disparities shown in a new analysis by Harry G. Levine, a sociology professor at Queens College, are especially striking in areas where African-Americans make up a small proportion of the population. Read

New York recreational marijuana bill is on the table

6/14/17--A group of New York state lawmakers and community advocates reintroduced a bill on Monday in an effort to legalize recreational marijuana. State Sen. Liz Krueger and Assembly member Crystal Peoples-Stokes, along with a collection of cannabis supporters and social justice activists, announced they will support the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act. The bill would create a legal market for cannabis sales in the Empire State and tax and regulate it like alcohol. Read

New York lawmakers make second attempt to legalize marijuana in 2017

6/9/17--New York lawmakers will soon reintroduce proposals that aim to establish a fully legal recreational marijuana trade. The proposals -- A3506 and S3040 -- would give adults 18 and older the freedom to possess up to two ounces of marijuana and grow up to six plants at home for personal use. It would also establish a fully legal cannabis industry by giving adults 21 and older the freedom to purchase cannabis products from retail dispensaries in a manner that compares to purchasing alcohol. Read

10-year-old boy overdoses on marijuana-infused sour gummy candy

5/15/17--A 10-year-old boy was rushed to a hospital emergency room after eating cannabis-infused sour gummy candy, where he was treated for an overdose and released. The medicinal marijuana-grade candy, a package of “pink lemonade belts,” contained 250 milligrams of THC, enough to cause an overdose of THC in a young child. The incident occurred when the boy was sitting unsupervised in the family car and found the candy. Read

Medical marijuana company advertises in New York subways

5/23/17--Vireo Health of New York, one of the state’s five licensed MMJ companies, on Monday launched a large-scale medical cannabis advertising campaign in the New York City subway system that targets nearly 100 stations with posters touting MMJ. If the campaign encounters no pushback, it would be a notable marketing breakthrough for both Vireo and the state’s MMJ industry, which has struggled for multiple reasons, including tight advertising restrictions. Read

Coming soon: vending machines that scan your fingerprints and sell you pot

5/12/17--American Green, a Phoenix-based cannabis technology firm, recently developed a vending machine prototype that will check a customer's ID using biometric verification, and sell pot or other age-restricted items to anyone legally allowed to buy. The option is being presented as ideal for consumers hoping to get their hands on marijuana while avoiding face-to-face contact with a seller, or perhaps someone they know. Read

New York State medical marijuana program

5/2/17--New York State releases the public list of consenting medical marijuana program practitioners. This list, however, does not include all of the practitioners registered with the Department to certify patients for medical marijuana, only those practitioners who have consented to be listed on the Department's public website. Additional registered practitioners have either not consented to have their information listed, or have consented to only being listed within the Department's Health Commerce System (HCS). Read

New York’s medical marijuana program suffers

5/6/17--Nearly 16 months after the New York launched its tightly controlled medical marijuana program, fewer than 1,000 medical practitioners have registered with the state to prescribe the drug. State Sen. Diane Savino (D-S.I.) and other advocates argued the lack of access to registered doctors and medical practitioners is a major reason why the program has struggled to get off the ground. Read

New York medical cannabis lawsuit, Vermont MMJ expansion & Texas’ preliminary CBD licensees

5/5/17--Marijuana Business Daily presents some of the notable developments in the marijuana industry over the past week, including New York medical marijuana dispensaries filing suit to prevent new competitors, Vermont lawmakers approving expanding the state’s MMJ program, and Texas awarding three preliminary licenses for its CBD program. Read

Activists say more access to medical marijuana needed

4/23/17--Even though it is now legal, activists say there are still many obstacles in place that keep people from gaining access to medical marijuana. According to Wendy Hart, treasurer of the Western New York Chapter of NORML, physicians don't have current information about the research that's been done and the facts that have been proven. Doctors and patients are in the dark, and they're scrambling for information. Read

Medical marijuana home deliveries expand to NYC, Long Island

4/21/17--Vireo Health, a medical marijuana company in Albany, is set to roll out a home delivery service to patients in Brooklyn, Queens, Nassau, and parts of Suffolk County who suffer from debilitating diseases, such as cancer and Lou Gehrig's disease. Read

Medical marijuana firm makes home deliveries in upstate NY

4/6/17--Medical marijuana provider Columbia Care NY has launched a home delivery service in upstate New York. It began a home delivery pilot program to patients across western New York through its Rochester location in March. The company says it expects to quickly expand the program to provide statewide coverage for all registered patients. Read

Apparent pot factory goes up in smoke in Bronx

3/26/17--Firefighters found a sizable marijuana operation while tackling a basement blaze in a home on Chatterton Ave. Police removed 17 garbage bags of marijuana from the house, according to a police source. Alberto Martinez, 65, was arrested and charged with criminal possession of marijuana, and officers took several people in for questioning. Read

Should you tell Uber your driver was high?

3/1/17--According to a New York Times published response about whether or not a passenger should report an Uber driver who appears to be under the influence of marijuana, Kwame Anthony Appiah, author of “Cosmopolitanism” and “The Honor Code: How Moral Revolutions Happen," states that the Uber driver's livelihood shouldn't be put at risk simply on a hunch. If the driver was driving badly, however, that’s something that should be reported without mentioning a hypothesis about the marijuana. Read

When retirement comes with a daily dose of cannabis

2/19/17--According to recent studies, older Americans are increasingly turning to marijuana for relief from aches and pains. Many have embraced it as an alternative to powerful drugs like morphine, saying that marijuana is less addictive, with fewer side effects. For some people, it is a last resort when nothing else helps. Read

Cuomo unconvinced on legalizing pot

2/9/17--As the state looks to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana and expands access to medical marijuana, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he's not ready to back the legalization of marijuana in New York. Some Democrats in the state Legislature have pushed New York to embrace marijuana, but Cuomo has been cautious on the issue since he took office in 2011. Read

Men of accused of smoking marijuana while working at ARC of Rensselaer

1/24/17--Ryan Riddell and Gary Vartanian, who worked at a home for people with developmental disabilities, are accused of smoking marijuana on the job. Police say they were at the ARC of Rensselaer when officers noticed a smell of marijuana in the building. Riddell is facing a felony drug charge, and Vartanian was charged with a violation for marijuana possession. Read

Patients struggling to find medical marijuana doctors

1/16/17--Of the 23 pot doctors in the Capital Region, the Department of Health confirmed only 9 are searchable through the state's health commerce website - a website only available to doctors. Even though those 9 local doctors have consented to have their names searchable, the state doesn't have their names listed publicly online. The only way to find a doctor is by getting a doctor referral, by searching through private websites or by word of mouth. Read

NY proposes decriminalizing marijuana

1/12/17--Gov. Andrew Cuomo is making another pitch for the state to decriminalize possession of some marijuana. Cuomo quietly included the proposal in a 380-page State of the State message that he provided late Wednesday to the State Legislature. Read

Hospitals in medical marijuana dilemma

12/25/16--The use of medical marijuana in hospitals remains in limbo nearly a year after state-sanctioned companies began dispensing it from licensed locations around the state. Hospitals cannot dispense the drug. Only the five companies that pay fees to the state can supply patients, and hospitals which rely on federal funds are faced with a federal classification of marijuana as a dangerous and illegal drug. Read

NY may add medical marijuana products

12/9/16--The New York Department of Health announced that it will lift a regulation that limited the state's five licensed medical marijuana companies to carrying only five products each, a restriction that patient advocates have criticized. The state agency will also begin accepting plans from the companies to sell their products wholesale to other registered organizations. Read

Legal marijuana in MA could mean ‘spike in arrests’ in NY

12/5/16--Top Rensselaer County law officials anticipate more arrests and possession tickets as a result of marijuana becoming legal in Massachusetts in 2018, mind according to The Troy Record. Troy Police Chief John Tedesco told the paper he considered a "spike in arrests" possible and said "preventative measures" like "undercover details and, certainly, vehicle stops," might be necessary. Read

NFL punishing player for using medical marijuana to treat Crohn’s Disease

12/5/16--Seantrel Henderson, an offensive tackle for the Buffalo Bills, is appealing his suspension for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy. Henderson tested positive for marijuana, which he uses to treat Crohn's disease. People with Crohn's disease can legally use medical marijuana in New York, but the NFL does not have a medicinal use exemption policy in place like it does with other banned substances. Read

New York medical marijuana gets law tweak, but no talk of legalization

12/5/16--In an effort to boost patient access, treat New York officials are loosening restrictions in its nearly year-old medical marijuana law. However, there is no sign the state is in any hurry to embrace full legalization. New York’s medical marijuana law still has some of the strictest rules among the more than 20 states that allow medical pot, but the state is looking at permitting additional companies to open new dispensaries, a move opposed by the operators of the 19 current dispensaries around the state. Read

New York adds chronic pain to medical cannabis conditions list

12/1/16--New York health regulators took a major step Thursday toward boosting the state’s fledgling medical marijuana industry by adding chronic pain to the list of treatable conditions for MMJ. The state’s health department said it is drafting rules to allow doctors to recommend chronic pain, decease although it didn’t spell out the symptoms that will qualify, the Journal News reported. Read

Access to medical marijuana may improve

11/24/16--Medical marijuana may become easier to obtain after nurse practitioners are allowed to certify patients for the drug. The state Department of Health announced this change as a way to improve patient access to medical cannabis therapies. Adding nurse practitioners to the program may especially help patients in underserved areas of the state. Read

New local medical marijuana dispensary helps family

11/6/16--Suffering from epilepsy, nine-year-old Haley Hilt has been struggling to find a cure to help. Any measures used to try and prevent them came up short, time and time again, but medical marijuana treatments remained as the other option to try and treat Haley. Since starting the treatments, her seizures have decreased nearly 75 percent, but for a while the family had to always drive three hours to and from White Plains to get Haley’s medication until a nearby dispensary newly opened in Albany. Read  

Marijuana legalization in Colorado, Washington, Alaska, Oregon, and D.C.

10/13/16--According to a new report by the Drug Policy Alliance, there is good news for the states considering legalization during this year's election. It has been reported that there is a massive drop in marijuana arrests, no increase in youth marijuana use, no increase in traffic fatalities, and major fiscal benefits in states with legalized marijuana. Additionally, tens of thousands of people spared from harmful marijuana arrests and collateral consequences, and $552 million in tax revenue raised in Colorado, Washington, and Oregon. Read and Read

How weed became a white girl thing

10/17/16--According to an article by Fusion writer Beca Grimm, when “Broad City” emerged in 2014 it showed marijuana’s growth in one corner of society, where young white women held down jobs and personal relationships, getting high often without completely going up in smoke. Although there doesn't seem to be much official census about how many women in the U.S. use marijuana, if recent media coverage (and legislative changes) are any indication, more and more women are sparking up. Read

Marijuana labs spawn lethal explosions across the country

10/1/16--An explosion that destroyed a New York City home and killed a firefighter has drawn attention to marijuana-making methods that are legal in many states, viagra order but can also be lethal. In recent years across the country, methods used to make the plants grow to produce more potent marijuana extracts have resulted in explosions and other catastrophes. Read

Ganjapreneurs pitch 200 marijuana investors at investment event

screen-shot-2016-10-02-at-7-06-54-pm9/16/16--During the Investor Pitch Forum, hosted by the cannabis industry investment and research firm The Arcview Group, some 200 investors Arcview described as “high net worth” met with dozens of companies looking to cash in on the promising new market of legal recreational marijuana. Read