Louisiana Governor Signs Bills to Legalize Medical Cannabis, Reduce Cannabis Penalties

cannaLouisiana Governor Bobby Jindal has signed into law two measures to legalize the medical use of cannabis, and to significantly reduce the penalties for cannabis possession.

House Bill 149 reduces the penalty for someone caught possessing up to 14 grams of cannabis to a maximum sentence of 15 days in jail, whereas it’s currently a maximum sentence of 6 months. The penalty for a second cannabis possession offense will be reduced to a misdemeanor with a maximum sentence of 6 months, compared to a maximum sentence of 5 year prison as it is currently. The penalty for a third cannabis possession offense would be reduced to a maximum sentence of 2 years, with the fourth offense being a maximum jail sentence of 8 years; under current law, a person’s third and subsequent offenses can result in 20 years in prison.

Read moreLouisiana Governor Signs Bills to Legalize Medical Cannabis, Reduce Cannabis Penalties

Bill to Reduce Cannabis Penalties, Allow Expungements, Passes Louisiana Legislature, Heads to Governor

brightbudsLouisiana’s House of Representatives has passed House Bill 149, a proposal to drastically reduce the penalties for cannabis possession while allowing for the expungement of certain cannabis convictions, with a 74 to 19 vote. The vote comes just days after the Senate passed the measure 54 to 37. It now heads to Governor Bobby Jindal, who plans to sign it into law.

House Bill 149, sponsored by Representative Austin Badon, will reduce the penalty for possessing up to 14 grams of cannabis from a potential six month jail sentence, to a maximum jail sentence of 15 days. The penalty for a second cannabis possession offense – any amount not deemed for distribution – would be reduced to a misdemeanor with a maximum jail sentence of six months; it’s currently a felony with a potential five year prison sentence.

Read moreBill to Reduce Cannabis Penalties, Allow Expungements, Passes Louisiana Legislature, Heads to Governor

Louisiana Senate Gives Approval to Bill Decreasing Cannabis Penalties, Allowing Cannabis Expungements

cannabisandcancerLouisiana’s Senate has passed House Bill 149, a proposal to significantly reduce the penalties for cannabis possession, while allowing certain cannabis possession charges to be expunged from people’s criminal records.

House Bill 149, which is a slightly altered version of Senate Bill 241 which the Senate passed in May, has already passed the full House of Representatives with a 54 to 37 vote. Sponsored by Representative Austin Badon, the bill would reduce the penalty for possessing up to 14 grams of cannabis from a potential six month jail sentence and a $2,500 fine, to a maximum jail sentence of 15 days, and a maximum fine of $300.

Read moreLouisiana Senate Gives Approval to Bill Decreasing Cannabis Penalties, Allowing Cannabis Expungements

Louisiana Governor Says He’ll Sign Bills to Legalize Medical Cannabis, Reduce Cannabis Penalties, if They Reach His Desk

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal.
Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal.

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal announced on Thursday that he’ll sign legislation to legalize medical cannabis, and to reduce the penalties for cannabis possession, if the bills reach his desk as expected.

Senate Bill 143, which passed the House Committee on Health and Welfare yesterday and has already passed the full Senate, would legalize the possession and state-licensed distribution of cannabis medicines with those with certain debilitating conditions. The proposal wouldn’t allow cannabis to be smoked, but would allow for it to be vaporized and consumed through oils, edibles, tinctures and topicals.

Read moreLouisiana Governor Says He’ll Sign Bills to Legalize Medical Cannabis, Reduce Cannabis Penalties, if They Reach His Desk