Bill to lessen first offense marijuana possession penalty passes Senate committee

Alabama could lower the penalty for marijuana possession

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - This week, a bill to decriminalize marijuana possession made it past a Senate committee.

As the law stands now, being caught with any amount of marijuana is considered a misdemeanor on the first offense.

That comes with a criminal record, fines and potentially up to one year behind bars.

However, a proposed bill could change that.

Someone caught with less than 2 ounces of marijuana would not be charged with a misdemeanor, and instead face a $250 fine.

But that only applies to a first offense, only.

Those in favor of the bill say it would keep non-violent offenders out of jails, helping with overcrowding.

Attorney Will League says the bill is tailored to not destroying people’s futures.

“Youth who has an indiscretion, not to affect his or her future and get them into the system. And once you get into the system, you’re talking about probation, records, poor issues finding jobs, and some things that could move past just their youth to affect them moving forward,” League said.

The bill made it out of the Senate Judiciary Committee, but not before Senator Arthur Orr from Decatur voted against it.

Now, it’s headed to the full Senate. We’ll keep you updates on what happens from there.

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