Albany County Cannabis – Is It Legal & Where To Buy 2024

Are there Marijuana Dispensaries in Albany?

Yes, there are licensed dispensaries in Albany. As of January 2024, there are 2 recreational marijuana dispensaries and one delivery-only location facility in the city. According to the Albany Unified Sustainable Development Ordinance (USDO), a marijuana dispensary may only be located in the Light Industrial (I-1) and General Industrial (I-2) zoning districts of the city. They may also be conditionally permitted in the following zoning districts:

  • Mixed-Use, Form-Based Warehouse (MU-FW)
  • Mixed-Use, Campus Institutional (MU-CI)
  • Mixed-Use, Form-Based Central Avenue (MU-FC)
  • Mixed-Use, Community Highway (MU-CH)

In March 2021, New York State enacted the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act (MRTA) to legalize recreational cannabis. The MRTA created the Office of Cannabis Management (OCM), paving the way for establishing New York State recreational marijuana dispensaries.

Are there Medical Marijuana Dispensaries in Albany?

Yes. Albany is home to two New York State-licensed medical marijuana dispensaries as of January 2024. Medical marijuana dispensaries in Albany are operated by registered organizations and serve patients registered under the New York Medical Marijuana Program. New York State passed AB 6357E in 2014, legalizing the possession, use, delivery, and administration of medical cannabis by designated caregivers for certified medical purposes. AB 6357E made provisions for registered organizations where designated caregivers could acquire medicinal marijuana for the patients under their care.

Can You Buy Cannabis from Online Weed Dispensaries in Albany

Yes. Residents can buy cannabis from online dispensaries in Albany. One of the licensed medical cannabis dispensaries in Albany delivers online cannabis orders to local addresses within the city.

Visiting a Dispensary in Albany

Albany residents can only visit the medical cannabis dispensaries in the city, as no recreational dispensaries are operating within the city boundaries yet. First-time visitors may query an Internet search engine with "marijuana dispensaries in Albany" or "dispensaries near me" to enable them to identify the city dispensary locations. Registered cannabis patients must bring their New York State medical marijuana cards, government-issued photo IDs, and the most recent physician certification when visiting the dispensary to purchase medical cannabis. It will also help to hold cash when visiting because New York-licensed dispensaries only accept cash as a payment means for cannabis sales.

Albany Dispensary Laws

Since the only dispensaries in Albany at the moment are medical cannabis dispensaries, they may only dispense medical marijuana only to patients enrolled in the New York State Medical Cannabis Program. The following are some Albany dispensary laws:

  • Medical cannabis dispensaries may acquire a license to cultivate, process, and distribute marijuana, but they may only distribute their own products

  • Per Section 113.13 of the New York Cannabis Program Regulations: \

    • Only authorized employees of medical cannabis dispensaries may dispense medical marijuana under the remote or in-person supervision of a New York State-licensed pharmacist
    • It is illegal to consume medical cannabis products on the premises of licensed medical cannabis dispensaries
    • Licensed medical marijuana dispensaries may only dispense up to a 60-day supply to certified cannabis patients
  • No licensed medical cannabis dispensary in Albany may be located within 500 feet of a school or 200 feet of a religious institution

Recreational Laws in Albany

Albany recreational marijuana laws include the following:

  • Only adults 21 years and older can possess and use adult-use cannabis, subject to state-approved limits
  • It is illegal to consume recreational cannabis in certain public spaces, such as restaurants and motor vehicles. Anyone caught doing this risks civil summons and fines
  • Eligible adults may grow up to three marijuana plants at home, subject to a maximum of six plants (three immature and three mature plants) per household for homes with more than one adult
  • It is illegal to sell adult-use cannabis in Albany without the requisite license
  • Driving while under the influence or impaired by marijuana is prohibited in Albany

Medical Cannabis Laws in Albany

Marijuana is legal for medical use in Albany, and the following are a few of the medical cannabis laws in the city:

  • Medical cannabis is legally available only to patients registered under the New York State Medical Cannabis Program. Such patients must have been diagnosed with certain debilitating medical conditions
  • Certified patients and caregivers 21 years and older enrolled in the state's medical cannabis program can grow marijuana for medicinal purposes. Patients may only grow up to six plants (three mature and three immature) at any given time
  • Certified cannabis patients in Albany may only purchase medical cannabis from licensed medical marijuana dispensaries and may possess up to a 60-day supply

How to Get a Medical Marijuana Card in Albany

To get a medical marijuana card in Albany, a qualified patient must obtain a certification from a New York State-licensed healthcare provider stating that medical cannabis suits their health condition(s). Once they get the physician certification, they should register online with the New York State Medical Marijuana Program. The OCM provides the public with Patient Registration Instructions to help applicants through the registration process. After registration, the patient can print a temporary registry card for use at Albany medical cannabis dispensaries pending the arrival of the registry ID card. Upon approval, the state's Medical Marijuana Program will mail a registry ID card to the patient. Enrolling in the New York State Medical Marijuana Program is free.

Where is it Legal to Consume Cannabis in Albany?

Albany residents can legally consume marijuana in their homes and licensed consumption lounges.

How to Buy Cannabis at an Albany Dispensary

There are no recreational cannabis dispensaries in Albany at the moment. Registered patients must bring the following to licensed medical marijuana dispensaries in Albany to buy cannabis:

  • Physician certification (the most recent)
  • Medical marijuana registry ID card
  • Valid government-issued ID

The Average Price in Albany

The average price of medium-quality cannabis in Albany is $265 per ounce, while high-quality weed costs about $330 per ounce.

Most Popular Strains in Albany

Commonly sold cannabis strains at Albany marijuana dispensaries include Wedding Cake, Black Diamond OG, Blue Dream, Gush Mintz, Royal Kush, Gorilla Glue, and La Bomba.

Can You Smoke in Public in Albany?

Albany prohibits smoking cannabis in public in compliance with the New York State Clean Indoor Air Act (CIAA).

How Much Marijuana Can You Possess at Once in Albany?

Registered medical marijuana patients in Albany may possess up to a 60-day supply of medical cannabis. Legally, recreational marijuana users in the city cannot have more than 24 grams of concentrated cannabis and 3 grams of cannabis at any given time.

Can I Ship Cannabis in Albany?

No. Federal laws ban marijuana and prohibit shipping cannabis anywhere in the United States, including Albany. Anyone caught moving marijuana across state lines commits a federal offense, punishable by severe penalties.

Can I Order Cannabis Online in Albany?

No New York State law prohibits Albany residents from ordering cannabis online. Some dispensaries are even licensed to deliver cannabis to local addresses.

Are there 24-hour Dispensaries in Albany?

No. Although Albany dispensaries' operating hours vary, none operate a 24-hour dispensary.

Can Tourists Use Dispensaries in Albany?

While out-of-state tourists can use recreational dispensaries in New York State, none is available to them in Albany because the city has yet to have one. The licensed medical cannabis dispensaries in Albany are only open to New York State permanent residents who are registered cannabis patients, not tourists.

Do You Need ID for Dispensary in Albany?

Yes. New York State marijuana laws require cannabis consumers to bring valid government-issued IDs to state-licensed dispensaries in Albany.

Best Dispensaries in Albany

Albany residents can identify the best dispensary in Albany by checking customers' reviews on the websites of the dispensaries operating within the city boundaries.

Do Dispensaries Scan your ID in Albany?

Yes. Albany licensed dispensaries scan customers' IDs to prevent selling cannabis products to underage persons

How Many Dispensaries are in Albany?

As of January 2024, there are four New York State-licensed marijuana dispensaries and 1 recreational marijuana delivery-only facility in Albany. The city is yet to have a recreational weed dispensary.

Can Dispensaries in Albany Take Credit Cards?

No. It is unlawful for Albany dispensaries to accept credit card payments due to the ongoing ban on marijuana at the federal level. Card companies are regulated by federal laws.

How Many Dispensaries You Can Visit in One Day in Albany

Marijuana consumers can visit as many dispensaries as they want in one day in Albany, provided they are still within the New York State legally permitted cannabis possession limit.

Do Dispensaries in Albany Take Health Insurance?

No. Like credit cards, Albany weed dispensaries cannot take health insurance for payment because federal rules regulate insurance companies.

Do Dispensaries in Albany Track How Much Weed You Buy?

Yes. New York State marijuana laws require dispensaries in Albany and other parts of the state to track the amounts of cannabis products sold to consumers using an inventory tracking system.

Can You Enter a Dispensary in Albany at Age 18?

Registered cannabis patients in Albany can enter any of the city's medical marijuana dispensaries. While there are no recreational pot dispensaries in Albany at the moment, entry into any licensed recreational marijuana dispensary in New York State is restricted to adults 21 years and older.

Where Can I Find Albany Cannabis Regulator’s Contact Information?

Albany cannabis regulator's contact information is hosted on the Office of Cannabis Management (OCM) website.

How Do I Report Illegal Cannabis Activities in Albany?

Anyone who observes or witnesses illegal cannabis activity in Albany can report the incident to the Albany Police Department by contacting them at (518) 438-4000.

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