State officials: NY lawmakers reach deal on legalizing marijuana; vote could come soon
New York legislators appear to have reached a deal to approve a bill to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, multiple state officials say.
The bill would include provisions to establish license, sales and tax regulations, and establish a new regulator for cannabis products.
It would also allow cultivations of a small amount of cannabis for personal use.
The deal also approves the study of new technology to help law enforcement detect impaired drivers.
The bill could be voted on as early as next week.
The move comes shortly after Gov. Andrew Cuomo called it essential to the state's social and economic wellbeing.
Drug treatment expert Dr. Jeffrey Reynolds says it'll be up to communities to determine how the legalization of marijuana will be rolled out and implemented.
"It's going to be up to communities across Nassau and Suffolk County to figure out where will the stores be located, what will their advertising be like, do communities even want this in their neighborhoods and what kind of treatment centers are available," says Reynolds.
Legal marijuana sales are expected to generate $300 million a year in new revenue for the state.
New York would become the 15th state in the country to legalize marijuana for recreational use.