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State: Ban plastic bags, legalize marijuana ADVERTISEMENT

State: Ban plastic bags, legalize marijuana

ALBANY (AP) --Gov. Andrew Cuomo wants to ban the use of single-use
plastic bags at stores across New York and add a 5-cent deposit to most non-alcoholic beverages not already included in the state's bottle bill.
Cuomo included the initiatives in the $178 billion state budget proposal he presented to lawmakers last week in Albany.
Cuomo's effort to get a plastic bag ban passed last year was shot down by the then-Republican-controlled Senate.
His bottle bill expansion would include sports drinks, energy drinks, fruit and vegetable beverages, and ready-to-drink bottled tea and coffee. Products such as dairy milk and infant formula would be exempted.
Cuomo wants to spend another $500 million for drinking water and wastewater infrastructure and allocate an additional $110 million in capital funding for state parks and historic sites.
Cuomo says New York should legalize recreational marijuana for adults over 21, a step which he says would raise an estimated $300 million in tax revenues each year.
Cuomo wants to permit personal use as well as retail sales. Marijuana would be subject to taxes at the cultivation and wholesale level as well as a 20 percent tax on retail sales.
Cuomo says he wants to let cities and counties prohibit retail pot shops within their boundaries if they choose.
Cuomo included his proposal in his state budget recommendation, meaning lawmakers could act before April 1.
New York would be the 11th state to legalize marijuana and the second largest after California.

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