Conn. Gov. Dannel Malloy Renews Push To Decriminalize Marijuana
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy has made waves in the past with his efforts to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana, and it appears he’s ready to take it even further.
Malloy’s administration submitted a bill this week that would reduce the penalty for possession of less than an ounce of pot, and the governor also hopes to legalize medical marijuana.
Current Connecticut law calls for up to a year in jail for that amount – a misdemeanor offense.
If the Legislature passes Malloy’s bill, the minor possession offense would be an “infraction” rather than a misdemeanor, and would carry a penalty of only a fine of up to $100. Under the new law, no criminal record would be involved.
The issue strikes home for the governor. His own son, Ben Malloy, was convicted of marijuana possession two years ago, but received no jail time, 1010 WINS’ Al Jones reported.
Connecticut residents said they are mixed on the proposed legislation.
“I think if he’s going to put a penalty on it, it’s got to be a stiff penalty,” one resident said. “You get $100 for talking on your cell phone – people talk on their cell phone all the time.”
“It’s an interesting idea,” said another. “I think the prison population has to be reduced, and if that’s a method of doing it, fine.”
Gov. Malloy also supports medical marijuana use, which he has said he would sign into law if it reached his desk. The Connecticut General Assembly passed a medical marijuana bill in 2007, but it was vetoed by former Gov. M. Jodi Rell.
What do you think about medical marijuana and/or decriminalization? Sound off below!