New York governor Andrew Cuomo outlined his plans to legalize weed the day after the governor of Illinois announced his plan. In his State of the State address delivered on January 15, he announced his plan to legalize cannabis in New York.
“We have to do it in a way that creates an economic opportunity for poor communities and people who paid the price, and not for rich corporations who are going to come in to make a buck,” he stated.
Under the plan, the cannabis industry will be regulated by an Office of Cannabis Management. It will legalize cannabis for adults age 21 or older. Cuomo is proposing a 20% state tax and two percent county tax on transfers from wholesalers to retailers, as well as a one-dollar-per-gram tax on dry flower and a twenty five cent per gram tax on trim for state-approved cultivators.
Municipalities would have the ability to opt out of legal weed sales, but the administration estimates that legalizing weed for adult use will eventually generate approximately $300 million in annual tax revenue.
On January 14, newly sworn-in Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker also announced plans to legalize cannabis in his state. A recent study found that legalization in Illinois would create 24,000 jobs.