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Albany reportedly nearing deal on marijuana legalization as clock ticks

June 16, 2019 - 6:08 pm

ALBANY, N.Y. (1010 WINS/AP) - Lawmakers have resurrected an effort to legalize marijuana in New York and are reportedly nearing an agreement that could be released as soon as Sunday night.

Members of the Democrat-led Senate and Assembly plan to adjourn their six-month session Wednesday.

With time running out, NY1 reports that leaders in both chambers are approaching an agreement on legalization and that a final proposal could come soon.

According to NY1, if the bill is posted by Sunday night then lawmakers could vote for it Wednesday, right before the session wraps up.

Supporters of legalized pot held a rally in Albany Sunday outside Gov. Cuomo's office.

Redmond Haskins of the Legal Aid Society tells 1010 WINS that the measure should also benefit those who are currently serving overly-harsh sentences.

"It's going back and it's addressing those past convictions and then it's taking the revenue that's going to be made from legalization in ensuring that the folks who've been targeted, who shouldered the brunt of prohibition, that they're first in line to reap the benefits," Haskins said.

Other high-profile bills awaiting action in the session's final days include one to combat climate change, another to authorize driver's licenses for undocumented immigrants, and a third to legalize paid surrogacy, in which a woman is compensated for carrying another couple or individual's child.

Supporters of legal marijuana and granting the licenses are optimistic their efforts will pay off, but opposition could still doom both measures.

Gov. Cuomo, a Democrat, says he's hopeful he and lawmakers can reach agreements on all four issues before lawmakers leave Albany. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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