North Hempstead Town Supervisor Judi Bosworth and the town board recently announced that the town has established a Cannabis Task Force to advise whether North Hempstead should opt-out of the sale and on-site consumption of recreational cannabis. Bosworth formed the Cannabis Task Force to ensure the Town Board considers all perspectives. The task force will be comprised of residents and experts in various fields such as business, health, and public safety.
“It is our responsibility, as a town, to listen to the varying perspectives of our constituents and use their input to decide what is in the best interest of the community,” Bosworth said. “As with all issues brought before us, North Hempstead will take a measured approach to this decision, giving great care and consideration to all aspects. We look forward to a thoughtful and inclusive process as we move forward.”
Town Clerk Wayne Wink added, “I am proud to serve as chair and moderator for these upcoming committee listening sessions. All community members will have ample opportunity to provide feedback and ask questions. It will be incumbent upon the committee to weigh all of their concerns and ultimately make a prudent recommendation to the town board.”
The Task Force will assist with conducting listening sessions to gather public input, weigh the advantages and disadvantages of opting out of the state legislation, make recommendations about the opt-out of the sale and on-site consumption of recreational cannabis, and make recommendations on zoning and other legislation to address public safety and quality of life concerns.
The Task Force will be led by Wink who will serve as a moderator for the group. At the June 16 town board meeting, the town board members voted to approve the nomination of Deborah Abramson-Brooks, Sue Auriemma, Maria Elisa Cuadra, Leslie Davis, Dr. Betty Hylton, Jordan Isenstadt, Nikki Kateman, Jack Kott, Dr. Jeffrey Reynolds, Michael Sahn, Gloria Su, Marianna Wohlgemuth, and Desiree Woodson to the Task Force.
The first listening session will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 24 at 6 p.m. at Town Hall, 220 Plandome Rd. in Manhasset. Additional meetings will be held on Monday, Sept. 27 at 1 p.m. at Clinton G. Martin Park, 1601 Marcus Ave. in New Hyde Park; Tuesday, Oct. 19 at 6 p.m. at “Yes We Can” Community Center, 141 Garden St. in Westbury. Residents who wish to submit written comments can email CTF@northhempsteadny.gov.
New York State legislation regarding the legalization of adult-use recreational cannabis included a provision that allows cities, towns, and villages to opt-out of adult use retail dispensaries and/or on-site consumption licenses within their municipality. The legislation requires that a local municipality that wishes to opt-out must pass a local law by Dec. 31.
—Submitted by the Town of North Hempstead