Friday, February 8, 2019
The on-going discussion and debate over marijuana legalization in the Empire State is worth watching closely for numerous reasons, particularly because there is good reason to expect that just about every state in the Northeast would follow New York's lead on any big reforms. It has also been interesting to see how many valuable reports and other materials have been coming from various governmental players as the discussion moves forward. I have linked below some prior posts to some prior documents, and this post highlights this new short report from the New York State Association of Counties (NYSAC) titled simply "Making Marijuana Legal In New York State." The report's introduction includes these paragraphs:
New York State lawmakers are debating whether to legalize the most widely used illegal drug in the United States, marijuana,and how to do so responsibly. According to the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 44 percent of the population over age 12 (nearly 118 million people) have tried marijuana in their lifetime. Twenty-two million used marijuana in the past month....
This report is not a discussion on whether marijuana should be legalized.Rather, it is a review of the challenges and opportunities that may be presented to counties if state lawmakers decide on legalization. Moving marijuana out of the unregulated black market will impact public health,public safety, criminal justice, the economy, and the environment in New York State’s counties.
What follows is a usefully straight-forward and reader-friendly account of many of the most important issues to consider in the debate over legalization. Folks very familiar with debates over marijuana reform will likely not find anything too surprising in this document, but I was still pleased and impressed to see NYSAC, given its stated mission to "represent, educate and advocate for New York's counties and the thousands of elected and appointed county officials who serve the public," doing such a nice job in this space.
Some prior related posts:
- New York Health Department issues big report concluding benefits of marijuana legalization outweighs potential costs
- "Estimated Tax Revenues from Marijuana Legalization in New York"
- "Mayor de Blasio Calls for Fair Cannabis Legalization That Promotes Equity and Opportunity for All"
- NYC Comptroller advocates for New York to pursue an "Equitable Cannabis Industry"
- New York City Bar Association issues report supporting proposed New York marijuana legalization law