Virginia won’t be relaxing its laws against marijuana possession after several bills that would have lowered penalties for simple possession failed to advance Monday from a House of Delegates subcommittee.
Under current law, being caught with a small amount of marijuana is punishable by a fine of up to $500 and up to 30 days in jail. Two Democratic lawmakers filed bills to make simple possession a civil violation that would still carry fines, but would no longer be treated as a crime carrying the prospect of jail time.
When you have half of the population violating a law, it’s a law that’s not working,” said Del. Mark H. Levine, D-Alexandria, a patron of one of the bills tabled by the House Courts of Justice Committee’s subcommittee on criminal law. A similar bill was filed by Del. Stephen E. Heretick, D-Portsmouth. [Read more at the Richmond Times-Dispatch]