New York’s SMOKEOUT Act Aims to Halt Unlicensed Marijuana Businesses

The SMOKEOUT Act New York: Clearing the Haze on Unlicensed Cannabis Businesses

Hey there, fellow cannabis enthusiasts! Today, we’re diving into the buzzing world of cannabis , and our spotlight is on the Empire State, New York. Buckle up as we discuss the latest buzzword in the cannabis industry: the SMOKEOUT Act New York.

Unpacking the SMOKEOUT Act New York

So, you’ve probably heard about New York’s recent efforts to expand its regulated marijuana market. But here’s the twist: a new is shaking things up. It’s called the SMOKEOUT Act, short for “Stop Marijuana Over-proliferation and Keep Empty Operators of Transactions.” Catchy, right?

The brain behind this bill is Assemblymember Jenifer Rajkumar, and it’s all about giving local governments more authority. They’re arming municipalities with the power to close down unlicensed cannabis businesses and confiscate their stash. Up until now, this task primarily fell on the shoulders of state regulators with the Cannabis Control Board (CCB).

Why the SMOKEOUT Act Matters

But why is this bill necessary? Well, New York has been struggling with a surge of illegal cannabis operators ever since the state’s legalization law rolled out. These “smoke shops” have been popping up like , openly selling unregulated cannabis and other shady goods, often with little fear of .

This unregulated chaos has caused a multitude of problems. Not only does it endanger the safety of communities, shop employees, and customers, but it also creates unfair competition for licensed dispensaries. Licensed establishments have to jump through hoops to provide rigorously tested and regulated cannabis, while smoke shops can offer their products at lower prices.

The Bigger Picture

So, where does the SMOKEOUT Act New York fit into the bigger picture? It’s all part of New York’s mission to grow its legal cannabis industry while cracking down on these rogue storefronts. Governor Kathy Hochul emphasized this when she stated that their top priority is to support the legal cannabis industry’s growth while eradicating illicit operations.

Now, let’s throw in some numbers: In , New Yorkers purchased over 3.5 million cannabis products, with total sales expected to exceed $150 million once December’s figures are added. And when it comes to enforcement, the state confiscated a whopping 11,600 pounds of illicit products worth around $56 million. They were on fire, performing 369 enforcement inspections on these rogue operations.

A Shift in Perspective

Speaking of New York’s cannabis landscape, there have been some positive shifts recently. The state’s Department of Labor published a bunch of sample job descriptions for various roles in the legal cannabis industry. This move aims to make the hiring process smoother and help prospective employees understand their qualifications for different positions within the cannabis field.

Governor Hochul also signed legislation that eases the way for financial institutions to work with state-licensed cannabis clients. This is a big win for the industry. And she didn’t stop there – she also signed a bill to provide tax relief to New York City’s marijuana businesses, which were blocked from making federal deductions under the IRS’s 280E code.

A Few Speed Bumps Along the Way

While there’s been progress, there have been some hiccups too. Hochul vetoed a bill that would have allowed hemp seeds in animal feed, disappointing pet owners and cannabis alike. And remember the bill that would have allowed licensed marijuana producers to sell products to tribal retailers? Hochul gave that one the thumbs-down as well.

Setting the Record Straight

Now, let’s address some misconceptions. There’s been talk about cannabis being contaminated with , a potent opioid. But here’s the deal: New York’s Office of Cannabis Management (OCM) is setting the record straight. While fentanyl has been found in drugs like MDMA and heroin, there’s no concrete evidence of marijuana being laced with it. OCM even released a factsheet on the issue, emphasizing that it’s a misconception.

Shifting Focus on THC Testing

On another note, the state’s Office of Addiction Services and Supports (OASAS) revised its guidance regarding THC testing for people in disorder . They now recommend marijuana screening only if the patient aims to reduce or quit cannabis as part of their treatment goals.

Black Friday Cannabis Shopping

Lastly, remember the post-Thanksgiving Black Friday? Well, regulators encouraged people to support small businesses by shopping for cannabis at licensed retailers. It’s a great way to score some deals while helping out your local cannabis shops.

And there you have it, folks – a rundown of the latest cannabis happenings in the Empire State. We hope you enjoyed our casual chat about the SMOKEOUT Act New York and other cannabis news. Stay tuned for more updates, and don’t forget to thank Kyle Jaeger for keeping us in the loop!

Rosemary Puffman
I'm Rosemary, a staunch supporter of cannabis legalization and its potential benefits. My roles as a writer, cannabis entrepreneur, and informed investor allow me to contribute to the evolving narrative around cannabis. Through my writing, I aim to destigmatize and educate, while my business ventures and strategic investments align with my belief in the positive impact of responsible cannabis use.

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