On Wednesday, February 16, 2022, the New York State Assembly and Senate passed a bill that provides temporary and conditional marijuana cultivator and processor licenses to existing businesses. The licenses will allow for a timely establishment of New York’s adult-use cannabis market by ensuring dispensaries have a product to sell.
Hemp growers who are in good standing, have grown and harvested hemp for two of the last four years, and who have possessed a valid industrial hemp grower authorization from the Department of Agriculture and Markets as of December 31, 2021, are eligible to apply for the provisional license. If signed into law, about 200 of the roughly 700 New York licensed hemp farms would be eligible for a provisional license. Processors who receive this license would be able to start manufacturing and distributing adult-use cannabis products throughout New York State.
The Office of Cannabis Management (“OCM”) would be able to issue provisional licenses until June 1, 2023. License holders may cultivate, minimally process and distribute cannabis products, provided that such final products shall be in the form of cannabis flower. However, theses temporary licenses would expire June 30, 2024. After that, all businesses are required to apply for a standard adult-use cannabis license.
The bill was sent to Governor Hochul for her approval and, if signed, will become law. The Wagoner Firm has been monitoring the progress of New York’s cannabis industry from its inception and remains informed on all developments by the New York legislature. We are available to answer any cannabis related inquiries and counsel potential applicants on provisional licensing requirements and other preparatory steps that may be taken while we wait for the proposed regulations under the Marihuana Regulation and Taxation Act.