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On March 31, 2021, the Governor signed into law Chapter 92 of the Laws of 2021. Known as “The Cannabis Law”, this legislation was enacted with the stated purpose of creating a regulated and taxed cannabis industry in New York and to provide for social and economic justice related to the sale and use of cannabis. While the Cannabis Law legalizes the possession and use of cannabis immediately, the actual sale of adult use cannabis is not expected to begin until late 2022 or early 2023.
The Cannabis Law creates a heavily regulated market requiring individuals and organizations to obtain a license before engaging in any of the myriad types of authorized cannabis businesses, including cultivating, processing, distributing, delivering, dispensing cannabis, or operating a cooperative, microbusiness, nursery, or on site consumption establishment.
One of the only topics left to local control is the ability for cities, villages, and towns to “opt out” of allowing retail dispensaries and/or on site consumption establishments within their boundaries. In order to opt out, a local government must enact a law to do so before December 31, 2021. If it does not enact an opt out law, retail sales of cannabis will be allowed to locate and operate in the municipality. However, a local government that, in 2021, opts out of allowing retail dispensaries and/or on site consumption establishments from locating within their boundaries may repeal such opt out at any time. Conversely, if a local government does not opt out in 2021, it cannot opt out at any time in the future.
To help make a decision that is right for Irvington, the Board of Trustees is interested in hearing from its residents on this topic. The Cannabis Law will be discussed at upcoming meetings in August and September. Please consider attending or watching these meetings online and make your feelings known.
The meetings will be held on August 30, 2021 and September 20, 2021, both starting at 7:00 p.m. In light of the increased spread of COVID-19, details about how the meetings will be conducted (in person or remote) are yet to be finalized, but additional information will be posted to the Village web site. Additionally, all meetings are streamed live and archived on the Village’s YouTube channel. Correspondence can be sent to Lawrence Schopfer, Village Administrator at 85 Main Street, Irvington, NY or LSchopfer@irvingtonny.gov