“From denying access to critical services such as housing, student loans and employment opportunities to revoking a person’s right to vote, draconian drug laws have disproportionately targeted communities of color for decades. That’s why I helped pass legislation that legalizes adult-use marijuana for New Yorkers 21 and older (A.1248-A). With the passage of this legislation, New York joins 14 other states, two U.S. territories and the District of Columbia who have enacted marijuana legalization.
“Revenue from marijuana sales would support critical state programs and services: 40% of revenue will go to education through the State Lottery Fund, 40% for community reinvestment grants and 20% for drug treatment and public education. This legislation will also expand economic opportunities as there are 321,000 jobs in the legal marijuana industry, a number that is expected to grow rapidly.”
“While passing this measure is a critical step toward advancing restorative justice and helping boost state revenue, it’s absolutely imperative that we take public safety into account. This bill requires controlled research studies to investigate how law enforcement can best identify cannabis-impaired driving and prevent it. The legislation my colleagues and I helped pass takes a measured and deliberate approach towards cannabis legalization that will protect public safety, advance social, economic and criminal justice and generate an entirely new revenue source to support New York’s future.”