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  • by Kevin Mahmalji, NORML Outreach Coordinator January 5, 2017

    thumbs_upOfficials in the Village of Oswego, Illinois recently passed an ordinance that allows local law enforcement to issue tickets and fines to anyone found with small amounts of marijuana or certain drug paraphernalia. For example, if a person is in possession of drug paraphernalia and is convicted of possessing 10 grams or less of marijuana, the charge for the paraphernalia is now considered a civil law violation, punishable by a minimum fine of $100 and a maximum fine of $200.

    Marijuana-related offenses became civil violations after the Illinois state legislature voted to amended the Cannabis Control Act in 2016, but it is up to local governments to amend their local marijuana laws to reflect the change at the state level.

    “Oswego’s fines will begin at $100 for the first offense and $150 and $250 for second and third offenses. There is a maximum $750 penalty for repeat violators,” said Oswego Police Chief Jeff Burgner.

    The City of Yorkville adopted a similar ordinance in October.

    Read more here: http://www.chicagotribune.com/suburbs/aurora-beacon-news/news/ct-abn-oswego-marijuana-st-0105-20170104-story.html

  • by Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director September 11, 2012

    Voters in four Michigan cities will decide this November on municipal ordinances seeking to legalize or depenalize local marijuana offenses.

    City officials in Flint, Michigan most recently approved a citizens initiative to amend the city code so that the possession on private property of up to one ounce of marijuana or cannabis paraphernalia by those age 19 or older is no longer a criminal offense.

    Proponents of the ordinance submitted over 1,000 signatures from registered Flint voters to place the proposal on the November ballot.

    Voters in Detroit will similarly decide this November on a local citywide measure, Proposal M, to remove criminal penalties pertaining to the possession on private property of up to one ounce of marijuana by adults over age 21.

    Voters in two additional Michigan cities will also be deciding on marijuana-specific municipal measures this November. Grand Rapids voters will act on Proposal 2, which seeks to allow local law enforcement the discretion to ticket first-time marijuana offenders with a civil citation, punishable by a $25 fine and no criminal record. In Ypsilanti, voters will decide on a proposal to make the local enforcement of marijuana possession offenses the city’s lowest law enforcement priority.

    Under state law, possessing cannabis is a criminal misdemeanor offense, punishable by up to one year in jail and a $2,000 fine.

    NORML has additional details about this November’s statewide and municipal marijuana-specific ballot proposals at our ‘Smoke the Vote’ page here.