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‘Going to need additional support’: lawmakers concerned over how legal cannabis revenue will be split

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(WBNG) -- Southern Tier officials told 12 News while the legalization of cannabis is a big opportunity for businesses, there is concern about the financial burden that will be placed on local governments.

Broome County Executive Jason Garnar (D) said he thinks legalization will create bigger profits in the private sector than it does the public one, especially for the first couple of years. Garnar said Monday he won't include any projected cannabis sales tax revenue in next year's budget and pointed to the hemp legalization as an instance where revenue was slow to generate.

The bill currently being voted on would create a thirteen percent sales tax to be placed on the sale of all cannabis products, with four percent going directly to local governments. Of that four percent, one of the percents will go to local counties, while the other three will go to the smaller municipalities.

Garnar said he is concerned about how the county will fund some of the associated costs that come with legalization.

"What I've been paying particular attention to is the revenue end of it, so what I want to make sure of is whether through the health department, whether it's giving enough support to the sheriff because he's going to need additional support," the county executive said.

Garnar added he has been told the county will receive other funding to help offset social services costs, as well as the expense of training additional law enforcement personnel on how to spot if someone is driving under the influence.

Josh Rosenblatt

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