Ohio: Toledo Voters Overwhelmingly Approve Municipal Depenalization Measure

  • by Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director September 16, 2015

    vote_keyboardBy a margin of over 2 to 1, voters in Toledo, Ohio yesterday approved a municipal ballot measure removing criminal and civil penalties associated with minor marijuana possession offenses. The vote took place during a special city election.

    Ballot Issue 1, the “Sensible Marijuana Ordinance,” amends the city’s municipal code to eliminate the threat of jail or fines for those found within city limits to be in the possession of up to 200 grams of marijuana. The measure also prohibits the city from suspending one’s license as a punishment for violating marijuana possession laws.

    Under Ohio law, any conviction for possession of a controlled substance is subject to driver’s license revocation for no less than 6 months and no more than 5 years.

    A summary of the ordinance is available here.

    Despite the measure’s popularity, both the city’s mayor and police chief have indicated their intent to charge minor marijuana offenders under the Ohio Revised Code rather than under the local ordinance. State law classifies classifies the possession of up to 100 grams of cannabis as a minor criminal misdemeanor, punishable by a fine of up to $150. Marijuana possession offenses involving more than 100 grams but less than 200 grams are punishable by up to 30 days in jail and a $250 fine.

    Toledo is the fourth largest city in Ohio.

    8 Responses to “Ohio: Toledo Voters Overwhelmingly Approve Municipal Depenalization Measure”

    1. vickia52 says:

      can it be that easy?

    2. young smoker says:

      Even with the changing views of the public we have diehard people willing to sidestep how others vote to continue penalizing how they wish. Law enforcement should be penalized for not listening to the citizens who pay their check. Including the mayor. Loophole shinanigans. Just like asking a fed to ride along to bust under fed law. We vote they refuse to give up. Supposed to be going after heroin but all I see is the low hanging fruit getting picked. Too much money to be made. Another Ferguson where the public is the governments paycheck. Oppression never ends well.

    3. young smoker says:

      Just like the seatbelt law for my safety they want to charge over 100 bucks forcing people to listen.. Who comes up with this crap? Oh wait big money. Give them tax breaks to the point we are paying them then add garbage laws to pay for it.

    4. rick says:

      so even tho the people have spoken the mayor and police chose to not listen can only hope that issue 3 passes in nov

    5. I just wish the Mayors and police chiefs of the larger Ohio towns would get their Heads out of their Butts and show some civic responsibility and maturity by giving the average law-abiding tax payer a break by not being so namby-pamby nit-picking about minor marijuana offences.GROW UP!!!!

    6. mexweed says:

      1. So far, so good, suggest adding in 2016 a Provision of Direct Encouragement to possess- or carry– moderate amounts, say 10 grams– 4 for oneself, 6 for three other friends– of #16-sifted herb. CLASSIFY cannabis with basil, marjoram, oregano, rosemary, sage, savory, thyme and REGULATE by means of narrow, #40-screened utensil– one gram is 40 $ingle tokes in a flexdrawtube one-hitter.

      2. Noting that individual licenses to raise four alert females will sell for $50, can we modestly suggest a Semi-Volunteer Labor Program, i.e. earn license through x hours work instead of payment? Same idea applicable also to sincere principled users and those who are distributing a gram or two to individual friends deemed worthy of trust.

      One species of work especially congenial to the first 90 minutes semivolunteer cannabinoid mentality is Landscape Safety– removal of $BIL. flammable deadwood, especially that branch litter lying around that could trip a visitor to the forest and poke them in the eye, etc., so mothers warn children not to go in there.

      Includes (A) trimming, sorting and bundling of intact workable logs, poles, sticks, for transport to carpentry centers downtown replacing live-cut lumber on the market! (B)bagging, bundling, hauling of small-particle mulch, weedstalks etc. to anti-erosion or compost use sites! Tentative name: International Deadwood Harvest Brigade IDHB or 1482. (Something about cannabis makes it especially fun to use an anvil pruner, ratchet pruner, handsaw or hatchet.)

      Participants would earn international credit toward individual and family licensing to own and carry a few ounces anywhere on planet (might as well start in Ohio) or raise 4 adult females and any number of trimmed (infertile) males in household or garden.

    7. Chad Thompson says:

      The City of Toledo has actually been open to enacting the Sensible Marijuana Ordinance. They are just trying to determine the enforceable components of the ordinance vs what is not enforceable. The legal basis that the ordinance is based is very solid, albeit radical. The city is not the final decision on the ordinance and this will end up going through the Ohio court system to get full authority, due to the novel approach of the initiative.
      It will take some time to settle but this will be enforceable and will become a good way to change the law in Ohio and possibly in other states that have similar laws.

    8. voter says:

      remind them that this is a democracy and vote there ass out with directions to the unemployment line

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