NBC10: Philadelphia City Council is expected to vote on Thursday on a bill that would decriminalize carrying small amounts of marijuana. Ordinance 140377, sponsored by Councilman Jim Kenney, would make possession of 30 grams or 1 ounce of the drug a civil penalty. Currently, possession of that amount or less requires an arrest by police. Should the law be enacted, officers would confiscate the marijuana and issue a $25 fine, which could be paid right there online or by mail. If paid, the incident would be removed from the person’s record. Kenney told NBC10.com in May that the ordinance could cut down 17,000 hours of police time and save $3 million in booking and jail costs. The councilman added that it could take up to a year for a minor marijuana arrest to clear the city’s criminal justice system. Mayor Michael Nutter is not in favor of the proposal, a spokesperson for his office says. MORE
PHAWKER: It’s not just the rational choice, it’s the moral choice. Seriously.
RELATED: The drug war is almost over if you want it. But you’ve got to want it. How can you not want it? It’s immoral. It’s racist. It’s unwinnable. Drugs aren’t the enemy, they are a symptom of a disease. The only reason marijuana is still illegal is there is too much money to be made in criminalizing it. Money for the cops. Money for the lawyers. Money for the prison guards. Money for for-profit private prisons. It doesn’t get any more cynical than that. Locking up people in cages for fun and profit. MORE