Marijuana a Step Closer to Being Decriminalized in Texas?
The Texas Observer reports that the Texas House Criminal Jurisprudence Committee approved House Bill 81 Monday, which would have police ticket someone caught with an ounce or less of marijuana rather than charging them with a Class B Misdemeanor that would have them spend 6 months in jail.
This is great! Said all Texas potheads lol....
However, according to the Observer, if you're caught 3 times for possessing marijuana, then we got a problem, Houston. Under HB 81, judges would have the option to elevate the civil offense to a Class C Misdemeanor. That's the clause in the bill that got the Republican vote.
According to the Texas Department of Public Safety, more than 61,0000 people were arrested for possession of marijuana in 2015.
Think about it....if all 60,000 people were fined say ....$200 each that's $12 million that can go toward whatever! Infrastructure, Education, and more here in the state of Texas!
“Law enforcement officials’ time and limited resources would be better spent addressing serious crimes," Heather Fazio with Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy told the Observer. "No one should be saddled with a lifelong criminal record simply for possessing a substance that is less harmful than alcohol."
The bill now heads to the Calendars Committee, who will determine if and when the legislation makes it to the House floor.