Since New York legalized recreational marijuana in 2021, unlicensed marijuana shops have been popping up and authorities are limited in their action.
“We go in, we do enforcement, and I think we can only do $250 fines,” NYC Mayor Eric Adams said Tuesday. “I thought it was less than that. But that’s the cost of doing business [to sellers]. And our police officers can’t take the necessary action.”
Adams said the issue was discussed with state lawmakers in Albany during “cacaus week.”
“We’re going to put a package [of bills] together just to deal with cannabis so this does not get out of hand. We are about up to about 1,400, -1,500 illegal cannabis shops,” the mayor said. “And it’s not only that they’re selling illegal cannabis, but they’re targeting young people!”
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“They are opening near schools. You can’t even sell alcohol in a certain distance of schools. Some of these products are targeting our young people.”
“These children are waking up in the morning, going into the store getting gummy bears that are laced with marijuana, and they are going to go in school and learn?” The mayor added.
“And they’re opening up all around us? No, no, no! We are losing our grip.”
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