Legislative Committee Will Discuss High Costs, Public Safety and Health Impacts of Commercial Weed
(New York, NY) – Smart Approaches to Marijuana New York released the following statement today applauding the Orange County Legislature’s decision to begin formal discussions about opting out of commercial pot sales should the New York State Legislature ignore the warnings of parents, teachers, medical professionals, mental health officials and law enforcement and legalize the drug. The issue will be taken up by the county legislature’s Health and Mental Health Committee. If they opt out Orange would join Rockland, Putnam, Nassau, Suffolk and other counties in prohibiting pot sales.
“We applaud Orange County for taking this step toward opting-out of pot shops on the streets of Middletown, Newburgh, Cornwall, Warwick and other towns,” said Kevin Sabet, former drug policy advisor to President Obama. “The increases in County and local costs for services will be enormous with increased drug use and the human costs will be immeasurable. Albany is looking to not only create an addiction-for-profit industry, it is looking to pass the buck to property taxpayers.”
Committee Chairman, Legislator James O’Donnell, former Deputy County Executive and a retired Lt Col. in the New York State Police stated, “There will certainly be significant fiscal and human health costs. If Albany politicians make marijuana legal, the state will literally go to pot. In the midst of an opioid crisis, why we would put more people on the path toward addiction and destruction is beyond me.”
The announcement comes on the heels of the release of a new study completed with the cooperation of New York State Sheriff’s Association that shows more than half of the anticipated revenue from commercial weed sales would need to be dedicated to just public safety and law enforcement personnel, training and equipment.