Bermuda Post

Saturday, Feb 04, 2023

New York's first legal recreational marijuana shop opens

New York's first legal recreational marijuana shop opens

The first licensed marijuana store in New York opened on Thursday, more than a year after the state legalized the drug and during delays in setting up the legal market to benefit people previously arrested for marijuana crimes.
The dispensary was opened in New York City's East Village by Housing Works, a non-profit organization that fights homelessness and AIDS. The non-profit was among the first 36 groups or individuals that the state awarded with a marijuana retail license last month.

"We're prioritizing repairing harm, harm that's been done even by the state's own policies," Chris Alexander, the inaugural executive director of the New York State Office of Cannabis Management, told a crowded news conference at the store. "It's no accident that disproportionately people who are incarcerated for possession and sale of drugs are people who are Black, Latino or Latina."

In legalizing marijuana in March 2021, New York lawmakers required that it could only be sold by licensed retailers to adults over 21 years old, and that the first licenses would be awarded to entrepreneurs with prior marijuana-related arrests or convictions, giving them a toe-hold ahead of corporate retailers in the lucrative market. Retailers can also only sell marijuana that licensed New York producers grew and processed.

New York initially promised it would find ready-to-open storefronts and business loans for the first licensees, and that non-profit groups that work with previously incarcerated people, such as Housing Works, may qualify for some licenses. But the process has taken longer than expected.

A gray market has flourished in the interim, with unlicensed retailers illegally selling cannabis out of stores and slickly branded vans across New York City.

Mayor Eric Adams, a Democrat, has said unlicensed retailers will not be tolerated. Alexander, the state marijuana director, said local and state law enforcement have been educating gray-market vendors on the licensing rules, following up with cease-and-desist letters and, more recently, seizing merchandise.

Marijuana has been fully legalized by 20 other states, but remains illegal under federal law, which can make it difficult for vendors to access business loans and other banking services.

At Housing Works, some of the smokable flower, which sells for between $20 and $30 for an eighth of an ounce (about 3.5g), and the pre-rolled joints are from marijuana that Florist Farms in Cortland produced in upstate New York.

"This is a game changer for our company," said Karli Miller-Hornick, the farm's co-founder. "We're going to be able to hire more people."

New York's marijuana sales will be taxed at 13.5%, revenue that will go to schools, public housing, addiction services and mental health services.

Peggy Pliscott, a 50-year-old hair stylist in the East Village, welcomed the dispensary's arrival on Thursday.

"People can make a living," she said. "People can buy what they need legally. Seems a win-win."
Newsletter

Related Articles

Bermuda Post
Close
0:00
0:00
Charlie Munger, calls for a ban on cryptocurrencies in the US, following China's lead
EU found a way to use frozen Russian funds
First generation unopened iPhone set to fetch more than $50,000 at auction.
WARNING GRAPHIC CONTENT - US Memphis Police murdering innocent Tyre Nichols
Almost 30% of professionals say they've tried ChatGPT at work
Interpol seeks woman who ran elaborate exam cheating scam in Singapore
What is ChatGPT?
Bill Gates is ‘very optimistic’ about the future: ‘Better to be born 20 years from now...than any time in the past’
Tesla reported record profits and record revenues for 2022
Prince Andrew and Virginia Giuffre Photo Is Fake: Ghislaine Maxwell
Opinion | Israel’s Supreme Court Claims a Veto on Democracy
Moonwalker Buzz Aldrin Gets Married On His 93rd Birthday
Who’s Threatening Israeli Democracy?
Federal Reserve Probes Goldman’s Consumer Business
China's first population drop in six decades
Microsoft is finalising plans to become the latest technology giant to reduce its workforce during a global economic slowdown
China's foreign ministry branch in Hong Kong urges British gov't to stop the biased and double standards Hong Kong report
Tesla slashes prices globally by as much as 20 percent
1.4 Million Copies Of Prince Harry's Memoir 'Spare' Sold On 1st Day In UK
After Failing To Pay Office Rent, Twitter May Sell User Names
Lisa Marie Presley, singer and daughter of Elvis, dies aged 54
FIFA president questioned by prosecutors
Britain's Sunak breaks silence and admits using private healthcare
Dirty bomb fears as URANIUM is found in cargo at Heathrow
Hype and backlash as Harry's memoir goes on sale. Unnamed royal source says prince 'kidnapped by cult of psychotherapy and Meghan'
Saudi Arabia set to overtake India as fastest-growing major economy this year 
Google and Facebook’s dominance in digital ads challenged by rapid ascent of Amazon and TikTok
FTX fraud investigators are digging deeper into Sam Bankman-Fried's inner circle – and reportedly have ex-engineer Nishad Singh in their sights
TikTok CEO Plans to Meet European Union Regulators
UK chaos: Hong Kong emigrants duped by false prospectus
France has banned the online sale of paracetamol until February, citing ongoing supply issues
Japan reportedly to give families 1 million yen per child to move out of Tokyo
Will Canada ever become a real democracy?
Hong Kong property brokerages slash payrolls in choppy market
U.S. Moves to Seize Robinhood Shares, Silvergate Accounts Tied to FTX
Effect of EU sanctions on Moscow is ‘less than zero’ – Belgian MEP
Coinbase to Pay $100 Million in Settlement With New York Regulator
FTX assets worth $3.5bn held by Bahamas securities regulator
A Republican congressman-elect is under investigation in New York after he admitted he lied about his education and work experience.
Brazilian football legend Pele, arguably the greatest player ever, has died at the age of 82.
Hong Kong to scrap almost all its Covid rules
EU calls screening of travellers from China unjustified
US imposes Covid testing for visitors from China
Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy Addresses Joint Session of Congress - FULL SPEECH
If a country is denied the right to independence by another, it is not in a union. It is in a dictatorship.
Where is Rishi? Chancellor Jeremy Hunt's excuses about the UK's economic challenges just don't make sense
Former FTX CEO Bankman-Fried finally arrested in Bahamas after U.S. files charges
Corruption works: House Financial Services Chair Waters doesn't plan to subpoena her donor, Sam Bankman-Fried, to testify at hearing on FTX collapse
Ronaldo's new contract...
Prince William's godmother resigns honorary royal role after exposing her/their racism
×