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‘A way to expedite’: New regulations in NYS to jumpstart retail cannabis

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — The New York State Office of Cannabis Management released new regulations for those looking to jumpstart a cannabis operation.

The board is now allowing licensees to seek approval for warehouse distribution, and deliveries.

Officials said sales could happen in a few days or weeks, pending documentation. The news applies to 36 retailers who have received their licenses in New York State.

However, applications have been halted in some parts of the state, after a federal judge placed an order. This includes the Finger Lakes Region.

While litigation is working itself out, officials say the state is coming up with new, creative ways to jumpstart the market. John Kaiga, Director of Policy at New York State Office of Cannabis Management, said it’s just another milestone in the emergence of regulated cannabis.

“We’ve been working really hard, creatively on how to get this market moving as quickly as possible,” said Kaiga.

He said there’s currently a huge amount of product, coming from growers across the state.

The new delivery model allows them to house the product at a temporary warehouse, for up to a year — while finalizing the dispensary.

Some regulations, include:

“You can only sell to retail consumers,” said Kaiga. “The orders must be placed online, so a delivery driver can’t bump into someone on the street who says, ‘I’d like to buy some cannabis,’ and be able to run that transaction then. Everything has to be done through the retailer sales portal.”

Other rules regulate the dollar amount you can deliver of cannabis in a car versus on a bike.

Attorney Ryan McCall with Tully Rinckey, is working on a few cases related to cannabis leasing now. He said the news is welcome for many licensees, who have been facing roadblocks in the process.

“They’re asking around – they’re checking to see where is there commercial storefront, where is there ability to store at a commercial warehouse, are these properly zoned,” he said. “Zoning has been a major issue here because, a lot of the towns and municipalities are saying, we may not be ready for this,” said McCall.

And in the meantime, other financial details will have to be worked out.

“There hasn’t been an approved point of sale processor yet,” said McCall. “Meaning you can only make these payments with a credit card, but we’re stil waiting on hearing who’s going to be the official credit card processor.”

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