Lawrence commission backs plan to cut pot fines to $1


FILE – In this June 17, 2015 file photo, marijuana plants grow at LifeLine Labs in Cottage Grove, Minn. Minnesota health officials will allow residents with chronic pain to buy medical marijuana starting in August, they announced Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2015, in a long-awaited decision that could expand enrollment in the state’s struggling program by […]

The Lawrence City Commission is backing a plan that would decrease the fine for possessing small amounts of marijuana to $1.

The Lawrence Journal-World reports that the commission voted 4-1 Tuesday to amend the city ordinance related to penalties for marijuana possession. The change would apply to people age 18 and older convicted of possessing 32 grams or less.

Commissioner Matthew Herbert says the vote sends a message to state lawmakers, especially since surrounding states have legalized marijuana in some form. Missouri voters in November approved medical marijuana.

But Commissioner Stuart Boley, who cast the lone dissenting vote, says he’s concerned that people will be confused because while the fine for the first and second offenses will be $1, the third marijuana possession offense constitutes a felony under state law.

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