By / December 29, 2022

The First Legal Cannabis Store in New York to Open Today

The first legal adult-use cannabis store in New York is set to open today, Thursday, Dec. 29, according to an announcement from Governor Kathy Hochul’s office.

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Adult Cannabis Use in New York

“Just nine months ago, we set out to get adult-use cannabis market in New York off on the right foot by prioritizing fairness, and today we are achieving that goal.

The industry will continue to grow from here, creating inclusive opportunities in every corner of New York State, with revenue going to our schools and community revitalization,” said Governor Kathy Hochul.

Housing Works Cannabis to Become Non-Profit New York Dispensary

The dispensary, Housing Works Cannabis, is a non-profit charitable organization located near St. Mark’s Place in the East Village neighborhood of Manhattan.

Sasha Nutgent, Housing Works store manager, called the launch a “once-in-a-lifetime moment.”

“We look forward to taking the lead as a model of social equity for the U.S. cannabis industry, specifically with our hiring practices and our continued support for people and communities disproportionately impacted by the unjust war on drugs,” Sasha Nutgent said.

New York Cannabis Regulator Congratulates Dispensary

“I’m thrilled that a non-profit like Housing Works, which supports formerly incarcerated people, is leading the way on sales,” said Tremaine Wright, chair of the Cannabis Control Board, New York State’s cannabis regulatory body.

“The start of sales through the Seeding Opportunity initiative is just the beginning of the robust ecosystem we are building – a fair and inclusive market will develop from here with support throughout to ensure licensees can overcome barriers and build this new industry.”

The First of 36 Licensed Dispensaries

So far, New York cannabis regulators have issued 36 adult-use cannabis dispensary licenses, 28 of which have been issued to businesses and eight of which have been issued to non-profit organizations like Housing Works.

To obtain one of the non-profit retail licenses, businesses must have at least one board member who has been in trouble with the law and must provide employment opportunities for people who have been convicted of cannabis use or possession.

(Featured image by RODNAE Productions via Pexels)

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