BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB)–Local officials told us today they’re anxious to see what the governor has to say about legalizing recreational marijuana.
In his budget proposal last year the governor announced a push to do just that, but it ended up falling flat.
One of the issues state lawmakers tripped up on last year included figuring out what to do with revenue from pot sales.
They were able to pass a pot decriminalization bill, however, which Governor Andrew Cuomo signed in July.
It didn’t make the sale of recreational pot legal, but it did remove criminal penalties for possession of any amount of marijuana under two ounces.
Now, as the governor prepares his budget address tomorrow, two local lawmakers say they’re ready for another push to make recreational sales legal.
“I think if you look at the polls, if you look at the numbers, if you look at the states around the3 US that have gone legal adult-use,” Assemblywoman Crystal Peoples-Stokes said.
Senator Tim Kennedy added, “It’s something that has been deliberated for many years, The fact of the matter is new york state is falling behind the rest of the nation from a criminal justice standpoint, from an economic standpoint. So it’s time new york state steps up and does the right thing.”
The latest polling on this issue from the Siena research institute showed 54% of registered voters in New York State supported legalizing recreational marijuana.
40% were against doing so.
There were a few other issues local officials mentioned their interest in hearing discussed tomorrow.
They want to know how the governor plans to close a reported $6 billion deficit and they want to hear about plans for funding the state’s schools.