Marijuana decriminalization passes hurdle in Maryland Legislature

By Jeremy Bauer-Wolf | Maryland Reporter

Following hours of hot debate, negotiation and shouting, the House of Delegates Saturday approved removing criminal penalties for possessing small amounts of marijuana in a 78-55 vote.

The measure already approved by the Senate, SB364, would make possessing 10 grams of marijuana or less a civil offense, like a parking ticket. A first-time offender would pay $100, while second and third breaches would get a fine of up to $250 and $500, respectively.

A previous statement from the office of Gov. Martin O’Malley indicated he has not yet decided whether to sign the bill.

The bill will need to return to the Senate for approval of the many alterations by the House Judiciary Committee.

at Maryland Reporter.

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com, a columnist for the Forum News Service, and host of the Plain Talk Podcast which you can subscribe to by clicking here.

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