The Philadelphia City Council voted Thursday to move forward with a bill to decriminalize the possession of up to 30 grams of cannabis for those 21 and older, making it a simple $25 ticket unless someone is caught smoking in public, wherein the ticket will be raised to $100. The Council is expected to make a final vote on the measure next week.
The Council initially approved the measure in June, though it was opposed by Mayor Michael Nutter. However, Mayor Nutter recently reversed his stance, saying that he’ll sign a bill to decriminalize cannabis as long as the ticket is increased to $100 for public consumption, and so that anyone who receives a ticket would need to appear before a Municipal Court judge (though they would receive no criminal record or jail time). Individuals would have the option of doing 9 hours of community service if they can’t afford the fine.