City Council Considers Changing Marijuana Law
The council wants to increase the fine for marijuana possession, less than two years after city voters agreed to decriminalize pot use.
Almost two out of every three voters approved the original law in 2004. But, the Columbia Police Officers Association doesn't think the $250 fine for having 35 grams or fewer does enough to discourage repeat offenders. The CPOA thinks a higher fine will stop convicted felons and repeat offenders from abusing the law.
"Why we wanted to look at that ordinance, or that change a little bit closer, is to be able to take into account a person's history, and criminal history in particular," explained Jeff Westbrook of the CPOA. "And we think that's something important that needs to be taken into consideration."
This time, the city council can change the law without voter approval. Monday night's meeting will be the first reading of the proposed changes.