Across the state of New York listening sessions are underway regarding marijuana legalization. Public comments as well as commentary from lawmakers and others are making the conversation of legalization a popular event. So far the consensus is that New Yorkers want legal recreational marijuana.
Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo spoke at the University of Binghamton meeting, according to Press Connects. She cited her concerns for small farmers in a heavily regulated system. Some of the speakers voiced their want to cultivate their own supply. Others said they’d prefer a dispensary to purchase from. Not everyone is for “big business” in New York and some fear that viable land for cultivating marijuana would be snagged up by big companies.
Lupardo said, “Revenue from this should go to specific agencies, not into a general fund.”
Nuri Harper, a civilian, said, “”The governor’s office needs to work with law enforcement across the state to make sure they’re not still not in the same mode of discriminating against certain groups of people for drug possession. The war on drugs is a war on us.”
Another concern was tight regulation. Too much regulation could drive consumers to make purchases in legal states neighboring New York. Many already state driving across state lines to buy cheaper tobacco products.
Alexis Pleus of TruthPharm wants marijuana decriminalized – not legalized.
Pleus said, “We need to expunge records, and not just for minor possession or possession only, but even for sales. We also need to make sure people on probation or parole are not further criminalized. If it is legalized, they too should be able to smoke and use marijuana.”
The listening sessions are scheduled to continue in the state. Those with an opinion are urged to attend the closest session to their location.