The Democratic Party of New York is officially on board with legalizing cannabis.

“The New York State Democratic Committee supports the legalization of marijuana which should be regulated and taxed in a manner similar to alcohol,” reads a resolution adopted by delegates at the party’s convention on Wednesday.

Legalization “is an important social justice issue,” the measure says. “Millions of peaceful Americans have been arrested, imprisoned, fined, or otherwise needlessly criminalized and stigmatized, potentially for life, because of their use of marijuana.”

The move comes amid a whirlwind of cannabis developments in New York over the past month.

Last week New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D), for example, directed the NYPD to stop arresting people smoking marijuana in public, and is moving to draft a plan to prepare the city for eventual statewide legalization. Days earlier, he announced that the NYPD will “overhaul and reform” its marijuana enforcement policies.

As a result, the NYPD commissioner formed a working group to study potential changes.

De Blasio, despite that fact that he remains, for now, personally opposed to ending cannabis prohibition, concedes that legalization is “inevitable.”

Meanwhile, Manhattan’s district attorney announced he will decline to prosecute marijuana possession and smoking cases, and his office released a related report on cannabis policy. Similarly, Brooklyn’s district attorney announced a similar move.

New York City’s comptroller released an analysis finding that legalization could generate $436 million annually in new state tax revenue from legal marijuana sales, and the city could bring in as much as $335 million.

Brooklyn’s borough president is on board with legalization, too.

The local moves come after the New York Times published an analysis finding that racially disproportionate arrest rates for marijuana have persisted in the city following previous incremental enforcement reforms enacted by de Blasio.

The City Council speaker is calling for an end to prohibition, saying that discriminatory enforcement of cannabis laws won’t end “until marijuana is legalized, taxed and regulated in New York City.”

Letitia James, the city’s public advocate — who is running for state attorney general — said current cannabis enforcement policies “continue to hold communities of color back.”

On the state level Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said the results of an official state study on marijuana legalization will be released soon.

New York Marijuana Legalization Effort About To Get A Big Boost

Elsewhere, Buffalo’s mayor is considering municipal marijuana reforms.

A poll this month found that New York voters support legalizing marijuana, 63%-32%.

The states’s two Democratic U.S. senators — Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand — support legalization.

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Read the full marijuana resolution adopted by New York Democrats below:

[scribd id=379988382 key=key-OYN9D4JfP4BPt6pTc4GI mode=scroll]

Kyle Jaeger contributed reporting to this story.

See the original article published on Marijuana Moment below:

New York Democratic Party Endorses Legalizing Marijuana

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