Prohibition

Erie City Council Votes Unanimously to Decriminalize Possession

Last week, the Erie, Pennsylvania, City Council voted unanimously to make the possession of less than 30 grams of marijuana into a summary offense with a $25 fine. Currently, the penalty is up to 30 days in jail, a $500 fine, or both. The mayor is expected to sign the measure into law.

Once enacted, Erie will join Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Harrisburg, York, and State College — and 22 states and the District of Columbia — all of which have stopped jailing individuals for possession of small amounts of marijuana. Across the state, towns and cities are considering similar commonsense policies. Unfortunately, however, law enforcement can still enforce state law and impose criminal penalties and possible jail time.

Imprisoning individuals for possessing small amounts of a substance that is safer than alcohol wastes valuable resources and can lead to a lifetime of harsh consequences, including denial of student financial aid, housing, employment, and professional licenses.

To get involved locally, contact the Keystone Cannabis Coalition. You can find some background materials on decriminalization here. And please let your lawmakers know it is time for statewide decriminalization.

Read more

Prohibition

Another Pennsylvania City Decriminalizes Possession

Early this week in Pennsylvania, the York City Council voted to make the possession of small amounts of marijuana a summary offense with a maximum fine of $100 and no jail time. Previously, it was a criminal misdemeanor that carried up to 30 days in jail, a $500 fine, or both.

Imprisoning individuals for possessing small amounts of a substance that is safer than alcohol wastes valuable resources and can lead to a lifetime of harsh consequences, including denial of student financial aid, housing, employment, and professional licenses.

York joins Pennsylvania’s three largest cities — Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and Harrisburg — and twenty-two states and the District of Columbia, which have stopped jailing individuals for possession of small amounts of marijuana. Across the state, towns and cities are considering similar commonsense policies. The time has come for statewide decriminalization.

To get involved locally, contact the Keystone Cannabis Coalition. You can find some background materials on decriminalization here.

Read more

Prohibition

Pittsburgh to Consider Decriminalizing Marijuana

Nov 17, 2015 Morgan Fox

Daniel Lavelle, hash, Pennsylvania, Pittsburgh, possession

While Pennsylvania patients and activists struggle with the state legislature to get a viable medical marijuana bill introduced, one local government will consider removing criminal penalties for possession.

Associated Press reports:

[caption id="attachment_9364" align="alignright" width="215"]danielle-lavelle Councilman Daniel Lavelle (PHOTO: Hadley Pratt)[/caption]

[Pittsburgh] City Councilman Daniel Lavelle is expected to introduce legislation on Tuesday. It would give city police the ability to fine people found to be in possession of less than 30 grams of marijuana or eight grams of hashish.

The ordinance sets a civil fine of up to $100 and lets police seize the drugs. It would not supersede state law.

...

He said in a release that the bill will help end the consequences of unemployment, lack of education, and being stuck in the criminal justice system.

Read more