New York State Narcotics Law
In 1973, New York’s legislature passed the draconian Rockefeller Drug Laws. In 2009, with DPA's help, these harsh sentencing laws were finally reformed. See New York’s current drug laws in the Penal Code. In addition, a Rockefeller Drug Law Sentencing Reform chart created by the Center for Community Alternatives is available here.
New York State Marijuana Laws
For more than 30 years marijuana has been decriminalized in New York State. However, thousands of people every year are arrested for marijuana in New York City.
In 1977, the New York State Legislature removed marijuana offenses from the narcotics Penal Code and made marijuana offenses their own statute. In the New York Marihuana Reform Act of 1977 “the Legislature [found] that arrests, criminal prosecutions and criminal penalties are inappropriate for people who possess small quantities of marihuana (sic) for personal use. Every year, this process needlessly scars thousands of lives and waste millions of dollars in law enforcement resources, while detracting from the prosecution of serious crime.”
Despite the fact that marijuana has been decriminalized, the New York Police Department's marijuana arrest crusade has led to the arrest of nearly 550,000 people since the 1990s for small amounts of marijuana. You can access New York State’s marijuana laws in the Penal Code here.