Virginia Bill To Ban Police Searches Based On Marijuana Smell Gets Governor-Suggested Changes

Virginia Bill To Ban Police Searches Based On Marijuana Smell Gets Governor-Suggested Changes

The governor of Virginia suggested changes on Wednesday to bills that would stop police from searching people or seizing property based solely on the smell of marijuana. Thankfully for cannabis reform advocates, Gov. Ralph Northam (D) isn’t asking lawmakers to amend the marijuana odor provisions of the broader proposal to reform policies for law enforcement searches. Instead, according to a press release sent by his office, he is suggesting an unrelated change to ensure police “can initiate a traffic stop when an individual is driving at night without the use of both headlights and/or without the use of both break lights.” The House and Senate will now consider the amendment, thought it’s not clear when they will do so. If the governor’s proposal is adopted by lawmakers without changes, the legislation will be formally enacted without needing his signature. Otherwise, it will come back to his desk for action. Northam’s move comes one week after he signed separate legislation that will allow people issued summonses for cannabis offenses under the state’s new decriminalization law to prepay their civil penalty rather than having show up in court. Together, when enacted, the two new reforms will build upon the measure to decriminalize cannabis that the governor signed earlier this year, which makes it so possession of up to one ounce of cannabis is punishable by a $25 fine with no threat of jail time and no criminal record. Under the new search-focused legislation, if enacted, “no law-enforcement officer may lawfully stop, search, or…

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Source : MJ moment
Link to original : Virginia Bill To Ban Police Searches Based On Marijuana Smell Gets Governor-Suggested Changes
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