Ithaca Mayor Svante Myrick has called on New York lawmakers to allow medical marijuana and consider legalizing marijuana in general, the Ithaca Journal reports.
“Every year, millions of dollars are spent on law enforcement and thousands of young people — disproportionately young people of color — have their futures destroyed for possession of small amounts of cannabis,” the first-term Democrat wrote in an opinion article published Wednesday in the Times Union of Albany.
“Because of that, I believe that New York should seriously consider legalizing marijuana; taxing it, and regulating it. That’s also why I have directed the Ithaca Police Department to focus on other issues that will more effectively protect the public. Between dealers of hard drugs and stopping violent crime, our officers have more important things to be focusing on than low-level marijuana offenses.”
Myrick, 25, told the Ithaca Journal that it’s something he believed for a while, but he wanted to get the piece out so the Legislature spots it as it reconvenes in January. The advocacy group Marijuna Majority also featured Myrick’s views on its website Wednesday, the paper said.
Although it has passed the state Assembly repeatedly, the legalization of medical marijuana has not passed the Republican-led Senate and Gov. Andrew Cuomo has opposed it.
Cuomo was asked yesterday about it, and he said while his office is reviewing it, his position hasn’t changed.