Weed Legalization Bill to Be Introduced in State Senate This Week

12.09.13 Andy Cush

New York State Senator Liz Krueger, long a supporter of legalizing cannabis, will introduce a bill to legalize the plant for recreational use in New York this week.

“We see the bill as the starting point for the conversation about a more rational marijuana policy, [one] that doesn’t result in a system that costs taxpayers an awful lot of money and generates racially discriminatory outcomes,” her spokesman, Andrew Goldston, told Capital New York

Capital has details about what the legislation might look like, based on a proposal Krueger issued in May:

Krueger’s original proposal called for adults to be able to grow up to six marijuana plants at home, and for the drug to be regulated by the state liquor authority, just like alcohol.

Marijuana would be taxed at a rate of $50 per ounce. (An eighth of an ounce in New York City typically costs about $50.) Eighty percent of the ensuing revenue would go to the state’s general fund. Localities could add an extra five percent tax, or opt out.

Of course, Governor Cuomo would have to sign the bill into law for it to take effect. Given Cuomo’s stated position on medical cannabis, that doesn’t seem likely.