The primary state office in charge of regulating its burgeoning cannabis industry will hold 11 community outreach events starting Jan. 27, officials on Friday announced.
The meetings will be held by the Office of Cannabis Management with a focus on specific regions of the state, starting with western New York, to discuss the effect of the new law allowing commercial cannabis sales in the state.
“We’re really looking forward to hosting these Cannabis Conversations. While we intend to inform New Yorkers on the MRTA, we also anticipate hearing and answering their questions and concerns,” Board Chair Tremaine Wright said. “This is just the beginning. As we continue to build an equitable New York cannabis industry, we will stay in contact with communities to make sure everyone has the necessary information to stay safe and healthy, and to seize the opportunity for long-term success and access to this industry.”
The events, to be held virtually, will run from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. The meetings also come after some municipal governments in New York chose to opt out of allowing cannabis businesses — either a retail store or on-site consumption facility — in their communities. Registration for the events can be found here.
Local governments have the option of allowing a cannabis business in their communities, however, as the law takes effect.
The goal of the meetings in part will be to explain the specifics of the new law and the potential effects on public safety and mental health.
“We are working hard everyday to build the new cannabis industry and central to that effort is ensuring New Yorkers understand the legalization law and how it impacts them,” said OCM Executive Director Chris Alexander. “These Cannabis Conversations are just the start of our community engagement, and we look forward to continuing to connect with New Yorkers as we build an equitable, inclusive industry that protects public health and safety.”