Mayor Eric Adams bemoaned the boom in illegal cannabis businesses in New York Thursday, and vowed more enforcement is coming after the NYPD towed 19 so-called “weed trucks” around Times Square earlier this week.
“Many people don’t read the complete law. All they read is, ‘Weed is legal,’ and they just kick into gear,” Adams said at an unrelated press conference in Midtown Manhattan.
“We have to now identify when people are reporting illegal weed being sold — which is far more stores than we realize — and then there’s steps to going in and confiscating those items.”
NYPD announced it had seized the 19 vans and the cannabis inside them on Tuesday, hitting their operators with six criminal court summonses and five parking tickets.
Owners can petition to have their vehicles returned, an NYPD spokesperson said.
Adams on Thursday warned the enforcement takes time.
“You have to go in with a warning. There are layers to it, and we are implementing those steps,” he said. “We have to educate folks and understand — next to the can soda can’t be cannabis.”
Entrepreneurs who want to sell the sticky icky can apply for licenses with the state Office of Cannabis Management beginning Aug. 25.
Additional reporting by David Meyer