Marijuana smokers enjoying the freedom to light up anywhere cigarettes are legally allowed could soon find themselves running to the hills.
On Sep. 13, New York State Assemblymember Phillip Steck (D) introduced legislation that “Prohibits the use of cannabis within thirty feet of a child or within thirty feet of any location in which children reside or attend for any recreational or educational purpose; provides for increased penalties for a second or subsequent violation.”
The proposed measure would amend current marijuana law, disallowing New Yorkers to smoke within 30 feet of anywhere a child could be expected to be present, “including areas separated by walls, closed doors or floors within a building.”
This ostensibly means that smoking and vaping marijuana would become illegal in large swaths of New York’s cities, including within one’s own residence, should a child potentially be present nearby. Tobacco smokers would be unaffected by the amendment.
If the state legislature passes the bill, and Gov. Kathy Hochul signs it or allows it to become law, there would be a 90-day countdown before law enforcement could make their first arrests. Those caught violating the law would be subject to a $25 penalty or up to 20 hours