Virginia Approves Marijuana Decriminalization Bill

The governor of Virginia announced on Sunday that he approved a bill to decriminalize marijuana possession in the state.

The legislation, which would make possessing up to one ounce of cannabis punishable by a $25 fine with no threat of jail time and no criminal record, was passed by the legislature and transmitted to the governor’s desk in March.

Prior Virginia law made simple possession punishable by a maximum $500 fine, up to 30 days in jail and a criminal record.

Gov. Ralph Northam (D) approved the legislation—SB 2 and HB 972—with no public signing ceremony amid the coronavirus outbreak, but he’s consistently expressed support for decriminalization and included a call for the policy change in his State of the Commonwealth address in January.

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