NYSBA Files with NY Office of Cannabis Management Urging More Reasonable Cannabis Ad Rules

As you know, Federal law still prohibits local stations from accepting cannabis advertisements. This is true even though these businesses are licensed by New York State.  We are still working on this issue at the federal level.

At the same time, the New York State Office of Cannabis Management is proposing to enact overly restrictive cannabis advertising rules. If federal laws are ultimately changed, we do not want to be prevented from accepting cannabis advertisements due to overly restrictive state laws.

We filed comments on these rules last August. The rules were once again put out for public comment and we filed new comments over the weekend. We continued to state our opposition to the following proposed rules:

1) The requirement that advertising can only be placed in programs where 90% of the audience is over 21.

2) The need for audience data regarding the specific programs in which the ad is placed.

3) The length of the labeling requirements for radio.

We support reasonable regulation. Specifically, the standards currently used for alcohol advertising should be applied to cannabis advertising. In other words, advertising should only be placed where approximately 70 to 75% of the audience is 21 years of age or older. In addition, cannabis advertisers should not have to provide specific demographic data on specific programs. In many instances, rating services do not provide such data in small market radio stations. The rules should be flexible regarding proof of the audience composition. Finally, the warning labels remain too long and take up most if not all of a 15, 30, and 60-second radio spot. We do not oppose labels, but the proposed rules effectively prevent cannabis radio advertising. Short concise labels are the most effective.

We will continue to lobby this issue at the state level. Again, even if we are able to make changes to the New York office of Cannabis Management’s advertising laws, accepting cannabis advertising may place a station’s license at risk because it will still violate federal law.

You can see our most recent filing with the New York Office of Cannabis Management here.

You can see our previous August 15th filing with the New York Office of Cannabis Management here.