A committee of the Texas House approved on Monday a law on the decriminalization of marijuana, which would make simple property punishable by a fine without imprisonment and without the criminal record of an individual.
2 are withdrawing from the Criminal Jurisprudence Committee and are now moving to a separate body responsible for putting bills for the floor debates on the calendar.
Owning an ounce of cannabis or less would result in a fine of $ 250 for the first two violations. According to this, the possession would be a Class C offense, which is still a lesser punishment than the applicable laws. Holding two ounces or less is a class B offense punishable by a fine of up to $ 2,000 and up to 1
Earlier this month The committee held a hearing on legislation and heard statements about the long-term effects of a low-level cannabis conviction in a person's records and how criminal penalties for possessions could lead to the release of law enforcement resources, so that officials can take more serious action crime.
Proponents are confident that the entire House will embrace the modest reform measure, even though legislators are considering other cannabis guidelines, such as extending the state's limited medical marijuana program.
"We are very optimistic about the likelihood of HB 63 being on the Floor of the Texas House passes by, "said Heather Fazio, Texans Director for Responsible Marijuana Policy, Marijuana Moment. "Overall, legislators on both sides of the gait agree that we should not waste valuable criminal justice resources on arresting and prosecuting people for small amounts of marijuana. Texas is ready.
While the expansion of medical cannabis, not to mention legalizing for adults, remains a dubious prospect in the conservative fortress, eliminating the jail term among the Republicans in Texas has gained popularity. Delegates of the Republican Party of Texas passed a platform last year advocating, for example, the decriminalization of marijuana.
"We support a change in the law to make it a civil and non-criminal offense that lawful adults only own 1 ounce or less of marijuana for personal use, punished with a fine of up to $ 100, but without Prison time, "states the plank.
Politicians even received a cautious green light from Governor Greg Abbott (R), who said he was open to laws that would reduce the penalties for simple possession.
During a governor's debate last year, Abbot said he did not want to see "prisons with people in possession of small amounts of marijuana" and came up with the idea of having marijuana possession of a Class B wrongdoing
According to Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy, the legislation currently has 32 authors or co-authors.
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Photo courtesy of Philip Steffan.