New York Passes Marijuana Legalization Bill By Reuters

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Cannabis product boxes on display at the Cannabis World Congress & Business Exposition (CWCBExpo) in New York

(Reuters) – New York lawmakers passed legislation on Tuesday to legalize adult marijuana use. This makes it the 15th state in the United States to allow recreational use of the drug.

Governor Andrew Cuomo said he was looking forward to signing the bill.

“New York has a long history as the nation’s progressive capital and this important piece of legislation will continue that legacy again,” he said in a statement.

The New York State Senate passed the bill by 40 to 23 votes, while the Assembly voted by 100 to 49 votes.

The decision was also welcomed by NORML, a pro-marijuana group, which said tens of thousands of New Yorkers were arrested each year for minor marijuana crimes and that most were young, poor, and colored.

“Marijuana legalization is a racial and criminal justice imperative, and today’s vote is a critical step towards a more just and equitable system,” New York Attorney General Letitia James said in a statement.

The official New York state website recently forecast that tax revenue from the adult cannabis program would reach $ 350 million annually and create 30,000 to 60,000 new jobs across the state.

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