This late in the session, the chances of passage of new bills are problematic, but here’s one worth a note all the same: Rep. Charles Blake proposes to further sharply reduce penalties for possession of less than an ounce of marijuana.

Under current law, possession of less than four ounces of marijuana is a Class A misdemeanor, a crime category punishable by up to a year in jail.


HB 1972, by Blake, Rep. Vivian Flower and Sen. Joyce Elliott, would make possession of less than an ounce a “violation” rather than a misdemeanor crime. Maximum penalty would be a fine of $200. And the violation would not be considered a previous conviction under a section of the law that makes four previous convictions of 1 to 4 ounces of marijuana a Class D felony.