Over the course of 2019, advocates of marijuana legalization have been pressuring New York lawmakers into a bill. Although Andrew Cuomo ran on his support for legalization, Cuomo and lawmakers disagree on tax policy regarding cannabis. They also disagree on whether or not counties should be able to opt in to allow retail sales. Ultimately, the legalization flame burned out in the spring, when the bill was finally dropped.
Yesterday, however, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a bill decriminalizing marijuana to a misdemeanor. The maximum fine for possessing less than an ounce of marijuana is $50. Records for past low-level marijuana cases may be erased, and current cases of possession will be automatically sealed. The law takes effect in 30 days.
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