May 27, 2015
decriminalization, Larry Hogan, Maryland, paraphernalia, SB 517, veto, Washington Post
[caption id="attachment_8810" align="alignright" width="200"] Gov. Larry Hogan (PHOTO: Washington Post)[/caption]
Late Friday afternoon, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) vetoed SB 517 — a common-sense bill that would decriminalize marijuana paraphernalia. His veto is deeply disappointing. If we can garner votes from three-fifths of the House and three-fifths of the Senate, his veto will be overridden and the measure will become law.
If you are a Maryland resident, please email your state delegate(s) and senator today and urge them to override Gov. Hogan’s veto.
The Maryland General Assembly passed SB 517 to fix the current legal absurdity that makes possessing a small amount of marijuana a civil citation (like a traffic violation), but leaves possessing the container that marijuana is in a criminal violation. Without this fix, the door is left open to selective, biased enforcement, and Maryland would continue to divert valuable law enforcement time and effort that would be better spent protecting our communities from violent crime.
An override is within reach, but won’t be easy. It is crucial lawmakers hear their constituents want them to vote “yes” on an override!