Yesterday, New York State Health Department released a report endorsing the legalization of recreational cannabis. This is the most recent example of Governor Andrew Cuomo's (D) once anti-cannabis administration backing legalization.
The report takes a strong position in favor of cannabis legalization bysaying the positive implications of repealing prohibition "outweigh the potential negative impacts" of allowing recreational use.
"Regulation of marijuana benefits public health by enabling government oversight of the production, testing, labeling, distribution, and sale of marijuana. The creation of a regulated marijuana program would enable NYS to better control licensing, ensure quality control and consumer protection, and set age and quantity restrictions."
The study also noted that legal cannabis could be a big tax generator. It predicted between $248.1 million and $677.7 million in revenues for the state in the first year, depending on the tax rate.
In light of this report, the state of New York seems increasingly poised to legalize cannabis. With New York City mayor Bill de Blasio (D) calling for an end to cannabis arrests, and gubernatorial challenger Cynthia Nixon (D) making legalization a major part of her platform, support for recreational cannabis has swelled in the past year. Even the once ant-marijuana Cuomo himself has reluctantly embraced legalization.