ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — More than 400 towns and villages across New York have opted to block local marijuana dispensaries and consumption lounges as a statewide deadline nears. The law that legalized recreational marijuana in New York this year gives municipalities until Dec. 31 to “opt out” of hosting dispensaries or on-site consumption lounges once retail sales start in a year or so. The Rockefeller Institute of Government reports that with three weeks left to act, more than a quarter of New York’s towns and 31% of its villages have voted to become the cannabis equivalent of dry towns when it comes to dispensaries — at least initially. Numbers are slightly higher for consumption lounges.
Photo: FILE – The THC percentages of recreational marijuana are visible on the product packaging sitting on a countertop, Monday, April 19, 2021, in Mamaroneck, N.Y. More than 400 towns and villages across New York have opted to keep out local marijuana dispensaries as a statewide deadline nears, with many officials awaiting more clarity from regulators before committing to the coming legal market. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson, File)