Florida Lawmaker Files Marijuana Decriminalization Bill


A lawmaker is bidding to make Florida the 27th state to decriminalize cannabis following launching HB 25 this week.

Democratic state Rep. Shervin Jones from Broward County desires to see criminal penalties removed for any one identified in possession of up to 20g of marijuana. The law would also cover edibles and concentrates containing up to 600mg of THC.

It has been filed for the 2020 legislative session, which starts in January. Jones is operating for the Senate subsequent year and he has vowed to fight for this bill to develop into law though campaigning to replace term-restricted Sen. Oscar Braynon.

The legislature in Florida is dominated by Republicans, so it may be a extended shot, but Jones pledged to battled for equity in the justice method.

“After getting charged with possession, lots of Floridians really feel the lasting influence as their student economic help, employment possibilities, housing eligibility, or immigration status are adversely impacted,” mentioned Jones in a statement.

He added that his bill would go some way towards restoring the state’s “broken” justice method, which he feels has disproportionately impacted communities of colour for far as well extended.

If effective, the bill would amend section 893.13 of the Florida Statutes by educing penalties for cannabis possession. It would also make sure that juvenile violators are eligible for civil citation or pre-arrest diversion applications.

Florida legalized health-related marijuana in 2016 and it has a thriving market, with organizations like Trulieve and Liberty Overall health swiftly expanding their retail estates. Even so, adult-use marijuana possession remains illegal.

Any person identified with significantly less than 20g of cannabis is guilty of a very first-degree misdemeanour, which carries penalties of up to a year behind bars and a fine of $1,000. Any person convicted of marijuana possession can also have their driver’s licenses taken away for a year, though they develop into ineligible for a government job and public housing, and they can generally struggle to get employment or a location at college.

Jones desires to see cannabis possession develop into a noncriminal violation as opposed to a misdemeanour, which would minimize these penalties and support lots of Floridians get access to employment, housing, and education.

Hawaii and New York decriminalized marijuana possession final month, and Florida could develop into the 27th state to do so in 2020 if Jones is effective. A current poll from Quinnipiac University recommended 61% of Florida voters are in favour of enabling adults to legally possess tiny amounts of marijuana for private use.


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