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As it has incredibly begun to be expected from states that are submitted to a marijuana legalization bill, New York was among the five that voted in favor of legalization this year. Along with 9 other states back in November of 2020.
The point is:
It almost feels like it’s no longer news when a state legalizes some form of cannabis consumption. Not only because it’s becoming more and more common, but because as a public we are realizing that merely legalizing consumption doesn’t take us too far.
There are plenty of other boxes to tick and obstacles to jump before citizens of those states can actually walk to the corner dispensary and purchase a legal bud of weed.
The legalized sale of weed in New York was approved last March. Which means it’s been almost 5 months since then and pretty much nothing has changed.
The thing is:
When a substance is legalized, there have to be regulating entities that rule this new industry. In the case of legal marijuana in New York, some of those governmental entities would be the Office of Cannabis Management and the Cannabis Control Board.
But apparently, Governor Cuomo has yet to assign an executive director for the first and appointees for the second. Although it has been almost 5 months since a decision was first made.
And the worst part is that it’s looking like the source of this delay is a… wouldn’t you believe it… a political reason. Something which we don’t want to get into right now, because let’s face it, who cares about politics, we just want to know the facts surrounding weed. What we can say is that it looks like nothing can happen in terms of weed sales without the regulators for it set into place, and these regulators cannot be set into place until politicians sort out their sh*t.
Not only that, once the appointments are made, the regulating bodies must be set up, rules need to be created, and a period of iteration and launch is probably on the horizon. This is why some experts have estimated a 2023 full rollout for dispensaries to open in New York.
The biggest issue with this delay isn’t that people who need or simply want access to legal weed can’t get it… although that is a big issue… the biggest issue is that New York is a seasonal state, and marijuana is a seasonal plant.
What this means is that marijuana growers need to plan ahead of the seasons so that they can produce the products that the public will consume. But without a license to grow, the season might very well leapfrog them. Leaving the public without weed in their stashes.
But there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Or so it seems like.
New York senator introduced a legislation that proposes a bill to create a provisional marijuana growing license that allows farmers to begin cultivating ahead of the formalization of the legal adult-use program.
The legislation would grant farmers a temporary license that allows them to start producing cannabis in time for the next season. If this is approved, it would put the legal cannabis industry in a better place for when legalization is actually actionable.
Of course, this is all subject to the approval of the Senate Rules Committee.
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