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Alabama Marijuana Decriminalization Bill Dies In House Committee

Written by on May 8, 2019

An effort to decriminalize Marijuana in Alabama has died in a House Committee.

The bill, HB 96 sponsored by Rep. Laura Hall (D-Huntsville), originally changed the possession of an ounce or less to a violation punishable only by fines. The bill was amended in Committee so that possession of 5 grams or less would be punishable only by fines.

This was still not enough to get the bill through. The bill died on a 6-5 vote.

Rep. David Faulkner (R-Mountain Brook) thought the bill still wasn’t good enough since multiple violations would still result in only a fine. He also stated that he is concerned more young people would use marijuana should this bill pass.

Reps. Dickie Drake, (R-Leeds), Allen Farley, (R-McCalla), David Faulkner, (R-Mountain Brook), Mike Holmes, (R-Wetumpka), Phillip Pettus, (R-Killen), and Matt Simpson, (R-Daphne) voted against the bill.

Reps. Jim Hill, (R-Moody), Tim Wadsworth, (R-Arley), Mike Ball, (R-Madison), Prince Chestnut, (D-Selma), and Chris England, (D-Tuscaloosa) voted for the bill.

A similar bill in the Senate saw much better results last month. SB 98, sponsored by Bobby Singleton (D-Greensboro), passed its Committee on an 11-0 vote.

The bill could still be revived and Hall says she will meet with prosecutors, law enforcement or others who have concerns about it.

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