Pittsburgh skyline. Image: Robpinion via Wikimedia Commons

Pittsburgh City Council is ending its 2015 legislative session on a high note, having voted Monday morning to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana within city limits.

Council voted 7-2 in favor of a bill, sponsored by Councilman Daniel Lavelle, that allows police to levy a fine of up to $100 against anyone possessing up to 30 grams of marijuana or 8 grams of hashish.

In the case of minors, parents or guardians will be notified of the offense and must pay the fine. Supporters say that’s better than charging suspects with a misdemeanor criminal offense, which can saddle defendants with a potentially job-killing rap sheet and burden police with paperwork.

Mayor Bill Peduto has pledged to sign the bill: A spokesman called it “a common-sense change that will help protect the futures of young people.”

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Chris Potter ~ Pittsburgh Post-Gazette ~

 

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