Ruling Further Delays Cannabis Sales

Dispensaries remain blocked in Hudson Valley

A federal judge on Jan. 31 rejected an appeal by New York State asking that recreational cannabis sales be allowed in the Hudson Valley and three other regions.

A Michigan company sued the state, claiming discrimination because New York is only issuing dispensary licenses to residents. In November, a federal court temporarily blocked the state from issuing licenses in five regions, including the Hudson Valley. Sales have begun in New York City and other parts of the state.

Practically, the decision put a hold on 63 of the 150 licenses the state planned to grant in 2022. Seventeen licenses were earmarked for the Hudson Valley.

The state’s Office of Cannabis Management appealed the November ruling, saying it should only apply to the Finger Lakes region, but an appeals court found the argument “unpersuasive.”

After New York State legalized the sale and possession of recreational cannabis, Cold Spring voters approved dispensaries in a November 2021 vote, and the Beacon City Council opted to allow dispensaries and smoking lounges.

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