New York’s Governor, Andrew Cuomo, took another step towards legalizing recreational marijuana this week by announcing that he has organized a working group to write a bill.
The bill would implement recommendations from the state Department of Health to legalize and regulate marijuana.
Cuomo stated, “As we work to implement the report’s recommendations through legislation, we must thoroughly consider all aspects of a regulated marijuana program, including its impact on public health, criminal justice and State revenue, and mitigate any potential risks associated with it.”
Cuomo’s counsel, Alphonso David, will be overseeing the working group and gathering and implementing feedback from government officials and other stakeholders. The panel will include public safety, public health, and economic experts and officials.
The Health Department created a 75-page report recently that strongly favored legalization. It read, “Numerous [New York state] agencies and subject matter experts in the fields of public health, mental health, substance use, public safety, transportation, and economics worked in developing this assessment. No insurmountable obstacles to regulation of marijuana were raised.”