What we know about Governor Cuomo's proposal to legalize recreational marijuana

Posted at 5:35 PM, Jan 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-16 09:03:21-05

Governor Andrew Cuomo is proposing to legalize recreational marijuana for anyone over the age of 21.

He outlined some of his proposal Tuesday during his State of the State Address in Albany.

The proposal would heavily tax pot, and generate $300 million in revenue.

Cuomo also pledged to aid communities that have been impacted by harsh drug laws, and seal criminal records for prior convictions. Local governments would be allowed to opt out.

“We had an expert group come together. They did a report. They said the benefits outweigh the risks,” Governor Cuomo said. “Now, we just have to put it in place, and we have to do it in a way that puts in an economic opportunity for poor communities, and not for rich corporations who are going to come in and make a buck.”

Revenue will be used for research, collecting data, a traffic safety committee, small business development, mental health treatment and public health education.

It's still unclear how driving high will be enforced and punished, or whether the governor plans to limit the number of retail shops statewide.

If it passes, New York would become the 11th state to legalize recreational marijuana.