New York state has moved a step closer to legalising recreational marijuana for adults after lawmakers reached an agreement to do so.

State Senator Liz Krueger told the Wall Street Journal legislators were putting the final touches to a bill that would create a new regulatory agency for marijuana and related products, and decriminalise possession of up to three ounces by people aged 21-plus.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo

Under the proposed bill, New Yorkers would be able to keep marijuana for recreational use at home, and grow a limited number of plants on their properties.

The bill has the support of beleaguered Governor Andrew Cuomo, who dubbed legalising marijuana his ‘top priority’ this year as part of a plan to increase tax revenue.

“This year we have to get it done, and getting it done by the time the budget is passed is essential,” he told a press conference.

The bill is expected to be taken up by the state Assembly and Senate next week.

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