* A couple of good ideas were advanced out of committee yesterday. But, considering the fact that the medical marijuana law hasn’t even been fully implemented, I don’t expect much movement the rest of the year…
“The war on drugs has not worked,” said Rep. Christian Mitchell, D-Chicago, one of the bill’s sponsors. “Our jails are overcrowded. We need to get smarter on crime, not tougher. Drug addiction is a public health problem, not a public safety problem.”
Under Mitchell’s House Bill 4299, which passed 6-0 in committee, instead of getting a misdemeanor for possessing up to 30 grams — about an ounce — of marijuana, violators would get a fine of no more than $100 with a “petty offense” on their record. […]
Rep. Kelly Cassidy, D-Chicago, passed another pot-ticketing bill 5-2 in committee that would decriminalize marijuana.
Under her legislation, House Bill 5708, possession of less than 30 grams of marijuana would be a “regulatory offense” that would still include a fine of $100 but not exist on someone’s record.
* Anita Bedell is a nice person and she means well, but she always goes so over the top on stuff that she loses credibility…
But Anita Bedell, with Church Action on Alcohol and Addiction Problems, opposed Cassidy’s and Mitchell’s bills. She said she’s worried about the message that lowering marijuana penalties sends to young people. […]
Bedell said the Legislature is “rushing” down the road of legalizing marijuana completely, an outcome that she said would be “disastrous” to the state.