This is not re-legalization but it’s not a poke in the eye, either. Illinois, a state along the Mississippi River, may de-criminalize. I keep harping on how re-legalization needs a heartland state to pull the center of the nation along. This isn’t that, yet, but it’s an encouraging herald of things to come. Here’s more:
In 2012, Chicago City Council voted to move to civil instead of criminal penalties for the possession of small amounts of marijuana.
Nearly four years later, the rest of the state has followed suit.
On May 18, the Illinois House voted to move Illinois to ticket-based penalties for possession of up to 10 grams of marijuana. If the governor signs Senate Bill 2228, instead of making arrests, police will start issuing tickets ranging from $100 to $200 per offense. Previously, anyone caught with 10 grams or less of marijuana could have been charged with a misdemeanor, resulting in a fine of up to $1,500 and possible jail time of up to six months. Under SB 2228, anyone charged with the civil marijuana possession penalty would also automatically have his or her record expunged six months after the bill’s effective date.
. . .
Illinois’ criminal-justice system must ensure public safety – it must also be fair and effective. Refocusing priorities by reforming the way the system punishes people for low-level possession offenses will lower costs and allow police to focus on serious crimes, while also ensuring that the state doesn’t ensnare people caught with small amounts of marijuana in a costly and ineffective system.
There is more detail at the complete, original post HERE.
When the original round of states decriminalized back in the 1970’s, “decriminalized” meant you could not be put in jail for your first simple possession bust. That’s all it meant! Fun fact to know!
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