UTICA – New York could be the next state to legalize adult-use marijuana.
Local members of the community were able to voice their opinions about this possible move at a listening session Wednesday.
The listening session, called by Gov. Cuomo, was packed with people voicing their opinions on a possible regulated marijuana program coming to the state. The listening session, held at the Holiday Inn on Burrstone rd., was just one of 17 sessions held throughout the state. The goal of the sessions is to get input from the community about the program. The feedback about the program ranged, with people on different sides of the issue.
"How do you regulate the commerce of marijuana?” asked attendee Peter Lennon “How do you regulate the pricing schedule based on the strength of the THC?”
Another attendee, Gary Colmey, said:
"It’s long, long overdue and it can do people a whole lotta good. An industry that produces a product that people want, we know this Because people have been buying it on the black market for about 100 years or better."
Hearing opinions from the community will help the state draft legislation for the program, that could be considered early next year.
"We’ll see what whoever is in the governor’s office decides to do,” said Senator Joe Griffo (R) 47th District. “They can take a number of different initiatives on this. They can present it as a part of their agenda for the new year, they could present it as part of a budget proposal, they can present it as just legislation."
The New York State Department of Health completed a study on the impact that a regulated marijuana program could have on the state. The study found that the positive impacts outweigh potential negative impacts.
“The key here is that we should listen to everybody” Sen. Griffo said. “We should review what’s taking place in other states that already have done this, and to assure that whatever is put forth for consideration is comprehensive And it’s done properly.