New York, NY – This morning Governor Cuomo announced changes to his legalization proposal in a press release. The full bill text with the 30-day amendments has not yet been publicly released.
Statement from Melissa Moore, New York State Director of the Drug Policy Alliance and member of Start SMART NY Coalition (Sensible Marijuana Access through Regulated Trade):
“After advocates highlighted shortcomings in Gov. Cuomo’s marijuana legalization plan, the Governor has announced amendments to his proposal. By reducing criminal penalties and allowing marijuana delivery services, the Governor has taken steps to address decades of disparate marijuana criminalization. There’s no question this shift comes in response to powerful organizing for marijuana justice across the state and in the Legislature.
While these changes are a move in the right direction, they are not a substitute for the more comprehensive Marijuana Reform and Taxation Act (MRTA), which remains the gold standard reform bill in the Legislature. That must be the starting point as it has stronger equity and community reinvestment provisions and a more balanced governance structure for the Office of Cannabis Management than the Governor’s proposal. We urge its swift passage to secure justice, jobs, equity, and true community investment for millions of New Yorkers.”