Spin Cycle

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Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said Thursday there’s not enough time remaining in the 2012 legislative session to consider decriminalizing marijuana for medical uses.

On a stop in Utica to promote the state budget, Cuomo said his belief remains unchanged  that the risks of allowing “medical marijuana” outweigh the benefits. But he also said the issue requires more research.

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“My position has been that there are tremendous risks here, also,” Cuomo said. “I understand the benefits, but there are also risks and I think the risks outweigh the benefits at this point. … I don’t think there’s going to be time this legislative session to analyze that issue because that is an issue that is going to take a lot of time to analyze properly, and we’re down to the last few weeks here. So I don’t think for this session, but I think it is an important topic.”

Sixteen other states have authorized medical marijuana programs. In New York, the Democrat-led Assembly has passed such a bill several times, but it has been blocked in the Republican-controlled Senate. Some Democrat senators have vowed to make a renewed push on the issue; the legislative session is slated to end June 21.