Tuesday, March 15, 2005

HB 254 hearing goes well

Rep. Harold Dutton's HB 254 was heard by the Criminal Jurisprudence Committee this afternoon. There were 4 or 5 people who spoke in support, one who was neutral, and none testifying against. The bill would drop the penalty for less than one ounce of marijuana to a class C misdemeanor and lower penalties for all other amounts.

The bill was left pending in committee so that a couple of amendments could be made. One amendment would limit the number of times a person could be charged on a Class C offense to three. After three Class C convictions, they would then be charged with a Class B misdemeanor.

Because of federal laws, anyone convicted of possession of marijuana would still lose their driver's license for 6 months, so Rep. Dutton included that in the bill.

Rep. Terri Hodge was very vocal in her support, and indicated that she would like an even more lenient marijuana possession law. But given the political climate in Texas, we will be thankful if this one is passed. Rep. Debbie Riddle (I think it was) indicated that she would not vote for it because she is from a conservative district and her constituents would say that she is "soft on crime." All the rest seemed to favor it, tho, so things are lookin' good.


Post a Comment

<< Home