It’s high time to decriminalize marijuana in New York, Democratic leaders are saying. Come the start of the legislative session in January, Gov. Andrew...

It’s high time to decriminalize marijuana in New York, Democratic leaders are saying.

Come the start of the legislative session in January, Gov. Andrew Cuomo will reveal a “green new deal” of his own. Details are scarce, but the governor’s team promised it would consider the recommendations that the Department of Health released in July calling for the state to allow, license and regulate recreational cannabis consumption—as well as suggestions gathered at “listening sessions” held across the state in September and October.

“The goal of this administration is to create a model program for regulated adult-use marijuana,” Cuomo spokesman Tyrone Stevens said. “We expect to introduce a formal, comprehensive proposal early in the 2019 legislative session.”

Albany lawmakers who have spearheaded legalization for the past five years are optimistic about their prospects next year, even though their Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act has failed to advance past committee. One of them, state Sen. Liz Krueger of Manhattan, noted the adjacent states of Vermont and Massachusetts, plus Canada to the north, have implemented weed-legalization policies of their own. The seeds appear planted in the Garden State as well. [Read more at Crain’s New York Business]

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