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In Connecticut, Carrying A Small Amount of Marijuana Downgraded From Misdemeanor to Fine


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Fox News:

HARTFORD, Conn. -- The Connecticut Senate narrowly approved legislation on Saturday that decriminalizes the possession of small amounts of marijuana.

The measure passed after Democratic Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman broke an 18-to-18 tie vote as the president of the state Senate. It now moves to the House of Representatives for final legislative action.

While opponents of the bill said it sends the wrong message, proponents said the legislation will help young people arrested for marijuana possession to avoid a criminal record that could hurt their chances to find a good job or enter college.

"It puts into jeopardy the future endeavors of such young people," said Sen. Eric Coleman, D-Bloomfield, co-chairman of the General Assembly's Judiciary Committee. "Decriminalizing the use and possession of small amounts of marijuana is a better course and in the best interest of young people whose judgment may not be fully matured."

Senate Majority Leader Martin Looney, D-New Haven, stressed that lawmakers were not legalizing marijuana.

"We are not enforcing the use of illegal drugs. We strongly disapprove of their use, but we're trying to realign their punishment that is more appropriate," he said, adding that the state should be focusing its scarce criminal justice resources on dangerous offenders.

"Fully matured" is one way of putting it... :rolleyes:
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