Friday, May 31, 2013

NY state Assembly votes to decriminalize public possession of small amounts of marijuana

Gov. Cuomo supports the measure, and Dems say while it's still illegal to have pot, 'it should not be a crime' to possess small amounts. Senate Republicans are balking at the bill.




State law requires those arrested with marijuana to be given the equivalent of a traffic ticket.

ALG is Chiu/AP

Marijuana remains illegal in New York, although some lawmakers want small amounts to be decriminalized.

ALBANY — The state Assembly voted Wednesday to decriminalize the public possession of small amounts of marijuana.
Supporters including Gov. Cuomo say the measure will reform NYPD “stop-and-frisk” tactics in which cops ask people to empty their pockets, then arrest them if they pull out a joint. The bill would make public weed possession a violation instead of a misdemeanor.
“It is still illegal, we are just saying it should not be a crime,” said Assemblyman Karim Camara (D-Brooklyn). Senate Republicans, however, have so far balked at taking up the measure. “We should not be sending a signal across the state that marijuana is okay,” said Sen. Martin Golden (R-Brooklyn).
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