Mayor Bill de Blasio is ordering the New York City Police Department not to arrest people they see smoking marijuana.
The mayor is opposed to legalized marijuana, but believes the state will act to make it legal, so he wants to ensure the city is ready.
"With marijuana legalization likely to occur in our state in the near future, it is critical our city plans for the public safety, health and financial consequences involved," Mayor de Blasio said to the Daily News.
The mayor is forming a new task force that will come up with solutions for how officers will deal with people smoking pot in public. They’ll also figure out what types of public health initiatives should be launched by the city.
"While I still have real concerns we must work through, it isn't difficult to see where this is headed, and any responsible policymaker must prepare for that eventuality. My focus now will be helping to craft the critical regulatory framework that must come before legalization is realized," de Blasio said.
Instead of arresting pot smokers, officers will give out summonses.
Governor Andrew Cuomo previously opposed the legalization of marijuana as well. However, he’s now formed a committee to look at the issue after his Democratic primary opponent, Cynthia Nixon, promised to legalize pot.
Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance and Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez announced earlier this month they would stop prosecuting most marijuana arrests.
Source: Daily News
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