Delaware Governor Jack Markell has signed House Bill 39 into law, the same day it was approved by the state’s Senate. The measure decriminalizes the possession of up to an ounce of cannabis, removing the possibility of criminal penalties or jail time.
Delaware now becomes the 20th state to remove criminal penalties for the personal possession of cannabis, including four – Colorado, Washington Oregon and Alaska – that have legalized cannabis distribution. The legislation is set to take effect six months from today.
“We commend Gov. Markell and the Delaware Legislature for moving the state forward and leaving its antiquated marijuana possession law behind”, says Robert Capecchi, deputy director of state policies for the Marijuana Policy Project. “Adults in Delaware will no longer be branded as criminals simply for consuming a substance that is undeniably less harmful than alcohol. Law enforcement officials will be able to spend more time addressing serious crimes instead of arresting and prosecuting adults for simple marijuana possession.”
The full text of the bill can be found by clicking here.