Virginia Governor Approves Marijuana Decriminalization Bill

Virginia Governor Approves Marijuana Decriminalization Bill

The governor of Virginia announced on Sunday that he approved a bill to decriminalize marijuana possession in the state. The legislation, which would make possessing up to one ounce of cannabis punishable by a $25 fine with no threat of jail time and no criminal record, was passed by the legislature and transmitted to the governor’s desk in March. Prior Virginia law made simple possession punishable by a maximum $500 fine, up to 30 days in jail and a criminal record. Gov. Ralph Northam (D) approved the legislation—SB 2 and HB 972—with no public signing ceremony amid the coronavirus outbreak, but he’s consistently expressed support for decriminalization and included a call for the policy change in his State of the Commonwealth address in January. “Virginians have long opposed the criminalization of personal marijuana possession, and Governor Northam’s signature turns that public opinion into public policy,” NORML Development Director Jenn Michelle Pedini, who also serves as the executive director of the state affiliate, Virginia NORML. Though reform advocates are pushing for broader reform, many view this development as a necessary step that could set the stage for cannabis legalization to pass sometime over the next few legislative sessions. A provision that requires the formation of a working group to study the policy change was also part of the bill, and insiders say that’s important because the legislature historically prefers such studies before enacting major legislation. Northam proposed the legislature make one amendment to the decriminalization legislation, however, pushing back the due date…

Excerpt only …
READ MORE BELOW
Source : MJ moment
Link to original : Virginia Governor Approves Marijuana Decriminalization Bill
reposted by Cannabis News World

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.