NEW YORK: On Wednesday, January 28, 2015, 6:30pm – 8:30pm, the Committee on Drugs and the Law and the New York City Affairs Committee will host an open discussion of the past, present and possible futures of cannabis law in New York City.
Featured panelists include Stephen Levin, New York City Council, District 33; Jumaane D. Williams, New York City Council, District 45; and Nitin Savur, Deputy Chief of Trial Division in Charge of Criminal Courts, Office of the New York County District AttorneyModerator: Patricia Salkin, Dean and Professor of Law, Touro Law Center
Public attitudes and laws governing the use of cannabis have been changing fast and creating challenges and opportunities for policymakers at the state and local level.
The changes in New York State during 2014 were especially great. A new statute legalized certain limited uses of cannabis for medical purposes and the Department of Health has released draft regulations for public comment. After attempting in 2012 to convince the State legislature to expand the scope of New York’s cannabis decriminalization statute, New York County District Attorney Cyrus Vance endorsed the de Blasio administration’s announcement that the New York City Police Department will issues summonses for possession of personal-use amounts of cannabis open to public view instead of making arrests. Earlier, Kings County District Attorney Kenneth Thompson announced that his office will not prosecute first-time offenders for possession of personal-use amounts.
Meanwhile, if proposed legislation that would regulate cannabis like alcohol succeeds, it will require adjustments to state and local law far broader than those necessary to create the newly legalized medical-use-only cannabis market.
The event sponsors include the Committee on Drugs and the Law and the New York City Affairs Committee.