NY Unlicensed Cannabis Dispensaries to Get Padlocks First, Hearings Second – Filter

New York’s long-promised crackdown on unregulated cannabis sales is coming into focus. With a $237 billion state budget finalized April 20, the Office of Cannabis Management (OCM) as well as local authorities now have “padlocking authority” over dispensaries selling without a license.

In some cases, if an inspection shows that storefront poses an “imminent threat to health and safety” law enforcement can padlock it on the spot. The city is then expected to schedule a hearing within five days. Tampering with the padlock will be punishable as a misdemeanor.

“Imminent threat to health and safety” includes activities like violent conduct, having unlicensed firearms on the premises, selling to minors or selling “products not tested or labeled” in accordance with state law. If an inspection doesn’t show that an unlicensed shop meets padlocking criteria, authorities can issue a warning to cease operations, or else get padlocked upon re-inspection.

“You know what’s hard to factor in your business model, having your front door padlocked for up to a year,” Governor Kathy Hochul (D) said during a press conference April 19. “You could appeal the fine. You’ll get your due process. But while the due process plays out, the padlock stays on.”


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