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The fine for getting busted with pot after the District decriminalizes the drug would now be a little cheaper, after the bill proposed by mayoral hopeful Tommy Wells passed the D.C. Council judiciary committee he chairs with a lower fine for possession attached.
Wells says he decided to lower the fine from $100 to $25 after considering how current marijuana possession busts are targeted at the younger and poorer. With the backing of a majority of the D.C. Council and Mayor Vince Gray, the bill’s almost guaranteed to pass.
Wells says the $25 fine—-along with having the marijuana in question confiscated—-is enough to send a message against smoking the drug. “Maybe it doesn’t impact wealthier people, but it’s not wealthier people that are getting caught smoking marijuana,” Wells tells LL.
At a morning press conference, Mayor Vince Gray said his administration hadn’t studied whether $25 would be a high enough fine. While the mayor’s backing Wells’ bill, Gray said that he’s “not there yet” on marijuana legalization.
A poll released today by the Washington Post, though, showed that the District is—63 percent of respondents favor legalizing the drug.
Medical Marijuana photo via Shutterstock