November 10, 2021

Office of Cannabis Management Announces Web-Based Tool to Support Localities Requesting to Opt-Out from Hosting Retail Dispensary or On-Site Consumption Licensees

Office of Cannabis Management Announces Web-Based Tool to Support Localities Requesting to Opt-Out from Hosting Retail Dispensary or On-Site Consumption Licensees
Easy-to-Fill Portal Provides Municipalities with Simple Process to Request the Cannabis Control Board Recognize Localities’ Decisions to Opt-Out
Cities, Villages, and Towns, Have Until December 31, 2021 to Opt-Out; Municipalities Can Always Opt Back In

The New York State Office of Cannabis Management (OCM) today announced the availability of a web-based portal (LINK) through which localities seeking to opt-out of hosting cannabis retail dispensary and/or on-site cannabis consumption licensees within their jurisdictions can easily and quickly send their requests to the state Cannabis Control Board.

The Marijuana Regulation & Taxation Act (MRTA) enacted in March gives cities, towns, and villages until December 31, 2021 to pass a local law that makes a request to the state Cannabis Control Board to opt their jurisdiction out of hosting retail and/or on-site cannabis consumption licensees. The portal announced today helps localities fulfill this requirement. It also provides an important tool to the Control Board, ensuring it has accurate information to make decisions, particularly as these local laws are subject to public referendums that may take place after the December 31, 2021 deadline.

“This web-portal will enable localities to file their local law opt-out requests and ensure that the Cannabis Control Board has this key information as we consider license applications and the siting of cannabis businesses” said Cannabis Control Board Chair Tremaine Wright. “I am thankful to the Office of Cannabis Management for working with our local government partners to create this tool; and I encourage localities requesting to opt-out of hosting dispensary and on-site consumption licensees to file their requests promptly so we can build an accessible, safe and equitable industry in New York.”

“The Office of Cannabis Management wants to ensure all New Yorkers have their voices heard as we build a new, safe cannabis industry and we are proud to be working with our local government partners to deliver a web-based portal to make it easier for them to inform the Cannabis Control Board of their market participation decisions,” said OCM Executive Director Chris Alexander. “Ultimately, understanding these decisions will be critical for those seeking a license to understand where opportunities are available and for the Board to understand the initial geographic picture of participation. We look forward to continuing to work with our local partners, as together we strive to build an equitable market.”

Localities that opt-out by December 31, 2021, can always opt back in. Municipalities cannot otherwise prohibit other conduct made legal with the passage of the MRTA, including cannabis possession and use by adults over the age of 21.

After the December 31 deadline has passed, the Office of Cannabis Management will compile the information provided by localities and make it public so that those seeking a license will have the information they need to find jurisdictions in which they can operate. The Office will provide routine updates thereafter as localities file and update their local laws.

For further information regarding the MRTA and localities, please visit: https://cannabis.ny.gov/system/files/documents/2021/09/cannabis-management-fact-sheet-9-21-localgovernment-06.pdf

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