More on why a NY Cannabis Control Commission has not yet been named…
Albany, N.Y. — The New York State Legislature ended its official 2021 session today without taking action on a vital piece of the state’s recent law legalizing marijuana.
There is still no control board or agency that can create the specific rules and regulations for a legal marijuana industry.
Neither Gov. Andrew Cuomo nor state lawmakers submitted official nominations for the agency that will oversee the cannabis industry, so no votes were taken before the session ended. That appears to indicate some level of political disagreement over the appointments.
Possession of small amounts of marijuana (up to three ounces) has been legal since April 1. But without specific agency regulations, there is no legal way to buy it or grow it yourself.
Even if the agency and board nominations had been dealt with this week, estimates were that it could take up to a year for the new Office of Cannabis Management to write the rules and issue licenses.
This could mean more delay, cannabis industry advocates say.
Filling positions in the new office and related advisory boards has been the No. 1 priority for the New York Cannabis Growers and Processors Association, which is currently active in the hemp cannabis industry and is eager to start moving in recreational marijuana.
“Everything really has to flow from there,” said NYCGPA president Allan Gandelman, who also runs the Head & Heal cannabis company in Cortland. “Without the (OCM and board) there are no regulations, and without the regulations we can’t get started.”