New York to legalise recreational marijuana use
Recreational marijuana will be legalised in New York, after state officials finalised a deal to permit casual usage and possession of the drug.
According to the New York Times, the deal will “allow delivery of the drug and permit club-like lounges or ‘consumption sites’ where marijuana, but not alcohol, could be consumed”.
Individuals will also be permitted to grow up to six marijuana plants at home for personal use.
The deal could be passed by New York’s Democrat-controlled Senate as early as next week, although it is believed that the first sales of legal marijuana in the state are currently a year away.
As for delivery of the drug, it’s thought that the deal will permit it to be dished out in the same way as takeaway food.
The Times claims the move is likely to spark a huge legalised weed industry to cope with demands from smokers, which could be worth up to $4.2 billion.
Legalisation in the state has long been supported by New York Assemblywoman Crystal Peoples-Stokes, who says it would help to reduce the disproportionate amount of black and Hispanic people who have been arrested for weed possession.
She told the NYT: “A percentage of revenue that is raised will get invested into the communities where the people who suffered mass incarceration come from and still live in many cases.
“For me this is a lot more than about raising revenue: It’s about investing in the lives of the people that have been damaged.”
NME previously hosted a panel that explored the idea of legalising the drug in the UK, with the likes of Professor Green, Damian Marley and Liberal Democrat MP Norman Lamb all taking part.