Written by Joey Garrison for The Tennessean.
A legislative push has mounted in Nashville that seeks to reduce the penalty for individuals who are found possessing or casually exchanging small amounts of marijuana to allow them to avoid a criminal record.
A newly filed ordinance sponsored by three Metro Council members would lessen the penalty for people who knowingly possess or exchange a half-ounce of marijuana (14.175 grams) or less to a $50 civil penalty. A court also could choose to suspend the civil penalty and instead mandate 10 hours of community service.
“This would allow the police to just write a ticket,” said Rosenberg, who called it needlessly expensive and time consuming for police to arrest people over the marijuana misdemeanor and misguided to give offenders criminal records.
“It’s very unproductive,” he said. “This has been an issue that has been moving nationwide from Florida to Washington as our society has come to understand that the most harmful effect of marijuana is marijuana laws.”