Metropolis officers have licensed a municipal initiative depenalizing marijuana possession for the Could 6th poll.
Advocates with the group Floor Sport Texas collected over 37,000 signatures from municipal voters to qualify the measure for the native poll.
The measure seeks to ban native legislation enforcement from making low-level marijuana-related arrests. It additionally stipulates that police can’t “think about the odor of marijuana or hemp to represent possible trigger for any search or seizure.”
In current months, voters in a number of Texas cities – together with Austin, Denton, Elgin, Harker Heights, Killeen, and San Marcos – have permitted comparable poll measures. Nevertheless, native councilmembers in Harker Heights shortly voted to repeal the legislation. Native voters could have the chance to resolve both to uphold or reject the council’s resolution later this yr. Native politicians in Killeen additionally took steps to amend its legislation; particularly, lawmakers quickly struck down language prohibiting police from initiating a search primarily based solely upon the scent of hashish.
San Antonio Metropolis Lawyer Andy Segovia has indicated that his workplace will possible refuse to enact the ordinance if voters go it – opining that metropolis authorities don’t possess the authorized authority to restrict the enforcement of state drug legal guidelines.
Texas leads the nation in marijuana-related arrests. Underneath state legislation, the possession of two ounces or much less of hashish is outlined as a prison misdemeanor, punishable by as much as 180 days in jail and a $2,000 positive. These arrested are disproportionately African People.
“Texans have proven that they need main hashish legislation reforms by way of polling, legislative engagement, and now on the native poll field,” stated NORML’s State Coverage Supervisor Jax James, who additionally serves because the Government Director of Texas NORML. “Whereas these native developments are essential in mitigating hurt on residents and reprioritizing legislation enforcement time, they end in a patchwork of differing marijuana enforcement insurance policies primarily based on location. It’s time for lawmakers to take steps to enact statewide reforms that deal with Texas’ failed coverage of hashish prohibition.”
Extra data is obtainable from Floor Sport Texas. NORML offers a listing of native decriminalization and depenalization ordinances on-line.