Queens lawmakers back new law that cracks down on illegal smoke shops by fining property owners


While it remains difficult to pinpoint the exact number of illegal smoke shops and unlicensed cannabis dispensaries that have proliferated across Queens, it is estimated that more than 8,000 are operating citywide. On Monday a new law was enacted that gives the authorities the power to fine landlords for knowingly renting to unlicensed sellers of marijuana or tobacco products up to $10,000 for violations.

Councilwoman Lynn Schulman introduced the legislation that will crack down on the illegal operations that undermine licensed sellers while depriving New Yorkers of the tax revenues and community reinvestment funds guaranteed by the 13% tax on legal recreational marijuana sales.