1. The Laws of New York
  2. Consolidated Laws
  3. Tax
  4. Article 20-B: Excise Tax On Medical Marihuana


Section 491 Returns to be secret

Tax (TAX)

1. Except in accordance with proper judicial order or as in this section or otherwise provided by law, it shall be unlawful for the commissioner, any officer or employee of the department, or any officer or person who, pursuant to this section, is permitted to inspect any return or report or to whom a copy, an abstract or a portion of any return or report is furnished, or to whom any information contained in any return or report is furnished, or any person engaged or retained by such department on an independent contract basis or any person who in any manner may acquire knowledge of the contents of a return or report filed pursuant to this article to divulge or make known in any manner the contents or any other information relating to the business of a distributor, owner or other person contained in any return or report required under this article. The officers charged with the custody of such returns or reports shall not be required to produce any of them or evidence of anything contained in them in any action or proceeding in any court, except on behalf of the state, the state department of health, or the commissioner in an action or proceeding under the provisions of this chapter or on behalf of the state or the commissioner in any other action or proceeding involving the collection of a tax due under this chapter to which the state or the commissioner is a party or a claimant or on behalf of any party to any action or proceeding under the provisions of this article, when the returns or the reports or the facts shown thereby are directly involved in such action or proceeding, or in an action or proceeding relating to the regulation or taxation of medical marihuana on behalf of officers to whom information shall have been supplied as provided in subdivision two of this section, in any of which events the court may require the production of, and may admit in evidence so much of said returns or reports or of the facts shown thereby as are pertinent to the action or proceeding and no more. Nothing herein shall be construed to prohibit the commissioner, in his or her discretion, from allowing the inspection or delivery of a certified copy of any return or report filed under this article or of any information contained in any such return or report by or to a duly authorized officer or employee of the state department of health; or by or to the attorney general or other legal representatives of the state when an action shall have been recommended or commenced pursuant to this chapter in which such returns or reports or the facts shown thereby are directly involved; or the inspection of the returns or reports required under this article by the comptroller or duly designated officer or employee of the state department of audit and control, for purposes of the audit of a refund of any tax paid by a registered organization or other person under this article; nor to prohibit the delivery to a registered organization, or a duly authorized representative of such registered organization, a certified copy of any return or report filed by such registered organization pursuant to this article, nor to prohibit the publication of statistics so classified as to prevent the identification of particular returns or reports and the items thereof. This section shall also not be construed to prohibit the disclosure, for tax administration purposes, to the division of the budget and the office of the state comptroller, of information aggregated from the returns filed by all the registered organizations making sales of, or manufacturing, medical marihuana in a specified county, whether the number of such registered organizations is one or more. Provided further that, notwithstanding the provisions of this subdivision, the commissioner may, in his or her discretion, permit the proper officer of any county entitled to receive an allocation, following appropriation by the legislature, pursuant to this article and section eighty-nine-h of the state finance law, or the authorized representative of such officer, to inspect any return filed under this article, or may furnish to such officer or the officer's authorized representative an abstract of any such return or supply such officer or such representative with information concerning an item contained in any such return, or disclosed by any investigation of tax liability under this article.

  2. The commissioner, in his or her discretion and pursuant to such rules and regulations as he or she may adopt, may permit the commissioner of internal revenue of the United States, or the appropriate officers of any other state which regulates or taxes medical marihuana, or the duly authorized representatives of such commissioner or of any such officers, to inspect returns or reports made pursuant to this article, or may furnish to such commissioner or other officers, or duly authorized representatives, a copy of any such return or report or an abstract of the information therein contained, or any portion thereof, or may supply such commissioner or any such officers or such representatives with information relating to the business of a registered organization making returns or reports hereunder. The commissioner may refuse to supply information pursuant to this subdivision to the commissioner of internal revenue of the United States or to the officers of any other state if the statutes of the United States, or of the state represented by such officers, do not grant substantially similar privileges to the commissioner, but such refusal shall not be mandatory. Information shall not be supplied to the commissioner of internal revenue of the United States or the appropriate officers of any other state which regulates or taxes medical marihuana, or the duly authorized representatives of such commissioner or of any of such officers, unless such commissioner, officer or other representatives shall agree not to divulge or make known in any manner the information so supplied, but such officers may transmit such information to their employees or legal representatives when necessary, who in turn shall be subject to the same restrictions as those hereby imposed upon such commissioner, officer or other representatives.

  3. (a) Any officer or employee of the state who willfully violates the provisions of subdivision one or two of this section shall be dismissed from office and be incapable of holding any public office in this state for a period of five years thereafter.

  (b) Cross-reference: For criminal penalties, see article thirty-seven of this chapter.

  * NB Repealed July 5, 2021