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School officials don’t want pot part of New York budget

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) – Education advocates are urging New York lawmakers to leave the discussion of recreational marijuana out of the state budget process.

Several groups sent representatives to Albany Tuesday, including the PTA, Rural Schools Association and Association of School Business Officials.

The rally came a day after the New York State School Boards Association issued a similar call. Association Executive Director Timothy Kremer says that rather than consider whether to legalize pot in the context of budget negotiations over the next two weeks, state leaders should take time to weigh the social, legal and public health implications.

Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo had wanted the budget to include a provision legalizing recreational marijuana, but recently acknowledged the issue likely won’t be handled that way.

Kremer released the following statement:

The question of whether New York should legalize recreational marijuana needs careful examination and discussion on its merits.

Our state leaders should have time to weigh the social, legal and public health implications of such a significant shift in law and policy, which inevitably will stretch into our schools.

Considering marijuana legalization in the context of state budget negotiations in the two weeks remaining before the start of the state fiscal year would limit the opportunity to consider the full spectrum of questions surrounding the issue.

Associated Press

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