Washington D.C. Councilman Tommy Wells unveiled a proposal today which would decriminalize the possession of of up to an ounce of cannabis, making it a simple $100 ticket, rather than an arrestable misdemeanor that carries with it the possibility of jail time. The bill is expected to be approved by the council, given that a majority (8 members) have signed on in support. This would give final consideration of the bill to the mayor.
Under current law in D.C., the possession of even a couple grams can land someone in jail for up to 6 months.
“Once you have a marijuana charge on your record, you cannot participate in certainly the construction boom that is happening all over the city, and it works to stigmatize people … and it disadvantages them from jobs”, stated Councilman Wells at a press conference.
The move is supported by a vast majority of D.C. residents; polling released earlier this year found that 75% of those in the district support the decriminalization of cannabis, and 64% support its legalization.