New York state lawmakers are considering changes to how cannabis is taxed in the state, with a proposal to repeal the 7% excise tax on medicinal cannabis as part of a broader $227 billion budget plan.
State Sen. Jeremy Cooney has introduced the proposal as a way to increase access for medical cannabis users, who currently face high costs due to federal laws that prohibit insurance coverage for medical cannabis. The excise tax is also seen as a barrier to access, making it more costly for patients to obtain the drug.
The proposal comes as New York expands its cannabis industry, with plans to double the number of licenses for retail cannabis businesses. Lawmakers are also seeking to repeal a potency tax on recreational cannabis, arguing that it undermines the growing businesses in the industry and could drive consumers to the illicit market.
For medicinal cannabis users like Desiree Little, the drug has been a lifesaver in managing chronic pain. However, high costs and restrictive regulations have made it difficult for patients to access the medication they need. Cooney’s proposal aims to increase access for medical cannabis users, potentially helping more patients like Little find relief from their pain.
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