New York Medical Cannabis Program Removes Fees, Adds Whole Flower

During their first meeting on Tuesday, the board in charge of implementing New York’s legalization bill enacted medical cannabis reforms including waiving application fees, allowing for whole flower, and raising supply limits.

Full story after the jump.

During their first meeting on Tuesday, the five-member board tasked with implementing cannabis legalization in New York permanently waived the $50 fee for medical cannabis patients and caregivers and made flower an approved form of medical cannabis in the state, LoHud reports. The board also approved allowing patients to obtain a 60-day supply of medical cannabis instead of just one month.

The medical cannabis reforms come as the board seeks to get the state’s nascent adult-use program back on track, which had stalled since the law was approved in March, due to the scandals of former Gov. Andrew Cuomo and a row between legislators and Cuomo over appointments to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, the report says.

Patrik Jonsson, regional president of the Northeast at Curaleaf, said that the changes to the medical cannabis program “will empower patients to make choices that work best for their needs.”

“These changes will give New Yorkers access to whole flower that has undergone standardized procedures and testing protocols, ensuring quality and safety.” Jonsson to LoHud

During the meeting, the board also approved Jason Starr as the chief equity officer for the adult-use program. Starr has worked previously as the director of the Long Island Chapter of the New York Civil Liberties Union and director of litigation for the Human Rights Campaign. In the role, Starr will be a key player in the development and implementation of the social equity plan included in the broad legalization law, which sets a goal that at least half of the adult-use cannabis licenses in the state are awarded to social and economic equity applicants.

Adult-use sales in the state are expected in the summer of 2022.

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