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When Will New York Legalize It? State Senator Diane Savino Explains

January 15, 2019
New York State Sen Diane Savino's district includes the turf of the Wu-Tang Clan — Staten Island.
New York State Sen. Diane Savino's district includes Staten Island.
New York could see legalization this year, says State Senator Diane Savino, in this interview with The Hash podcast co-host Max Savage Levenson. Savino details what New Yorkers can do to get involved in the effort, as well as the steps lawmakers could take to ensure prohibition ends equitably.

Subscribe to The Hash podcast for free via iTunes or Stitcher

The Hash, Season 4, Episode 2: New York State Senator Diane Savino.

While New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has slowly come around to cannabis, State Senator Savino has long-championed access to herb in the state. She steered the state’s medical legislation, the 2014 Compassionate Care Act, and recently has come out as a full-on advocate for an adult-use market in the state — assuming it’s done right.

On New York legalization, State Sen. Savino tells Leafly listeners: “New York stands on the precipice of creating the model program for the country.”

Savino says: “Marijuana is a bipartisan issue. You have bipartisan support, and bipartisan opposition. … It could happen as early as next year. … But as we’ve seen, all Democrats don’t think the same way.”

On her personal experience: “I think every teenager in history has smoked pot, and anyone that tells you differently, I’m never really sure I trust them. … That last time I smoked a joint was about 30 years ago, I prefer a cabernet.”

On cannabis prohibition: “There are far more dangerous legal drugs that are available to people, including alcohol.”

On unregulated CBD in New York: “It’s like snake oil. … Nobody knows what’s in it. … They’re buying it in bodegas, it’s really dangerous.”

And advice to consumers: “Don’t be afraid to talk to your elected officials — one way or the other.”

About Leafly Podcasts

Leafly has four podcasts for different skill levels:

  • The Hash is like NPR’s ‘Fresh Air’ — on cannabis. We deliver high-profile, news and lifestyle features that set the bar for cannabis audio journalism.
  • What Are You Smoking? rounds up cannabis product trends for true aficionados.
  • The Roll-Up keeps you abreast of each week’s big cannabis news.
  • And Canada’s legal rollout gets covered by The High Life.

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About The Hash

A dab of ‘Fresh Air’ for cannabis—each ten-minute Hash episode is co-hosted and produced by award-winning journalist and best-selling author David Downs, and Max Savage Levenson (Pitchfork, NPR).

The weekly, scripted podcast’s guests this season include drag queen Laganja Estranja, Mimicking Birds’ Adam Trachsel, and Puffco CEO Roger Volodarsky.

Subscribe to The Hash on iTunes or Stitcher. Watch the making of The Hash on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.  For editorial, contact david.downs@leafly.com.

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See The Hash Live in Portland Feb. 14-17!

Our Portland, Oregon listeners (and visitors) should come on down to Portland Valentine’s Day weekend 2019 to watch The Hash record live on location. Buy your tickets now to the Listen Up Portland podcast festival, featuring Bullseye with Jesse Thorn, Guys We F#@$!d with Krystyna Hutchinson and Corinne Fisher, and many more legends of audio. Tickets will sell out.

When do you think New York will finally legalize cannabis?

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Leafly Podcasts

Leafly Podcasts bring the latest in cannabis news, products, and culture directly to your ears each week. Subscribe to The Roll-Up, What Are You Smoking?, The Hash, and The High Life on podcast outlets like iTunes, Spotify, and beyond.

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  • viper643

    New York budget deadline is April 1. It would be fitting for recreational weed to be legal on 4/20. My advice for Sen. Savino would be to forget about developing the “model” program. Nevada already has the model program.