Yesterday (6/18), the NJ state Legislature passed a proposed bill to decriminalize marijuana with the assembly voting 63-10. Keep in mind the Assembly and Senate must pass the bill and Governor Murphy still needs to sign this for it to go into effect.
The bill that passed will require police officers to only give out a fine of $50 if the person is in posession of two ounces or less. Currently, if you get caught even with just a .5 of marijuana you get arrested.
NORML State Policies Coordinator Carly Wolf said in a press release:
“Law enforcement continues to arrest almost 100 New Jerseyans every day for marijuana violations, a disproportionate number of whom are young, poor, and/or people of color. Passage of this legislation is the first step in repairing some of the harms caused by the War on Drugs.”
This bill will also clear records of those with prior weed convictions. If you happen to have over two ounces but less than a pound, you will get a $1,000 fine and/or possible jail time. There's always a catch though - marijuana paraphernalia is still illegal and people could still be arrested for being "under the influence" of weed.
There was also a second bill that was proposed to decriminalize up to one pound of marijuana. Instead of them choosing to pass this bill, they instead chose to pass the bill that only decriminalized up to two oz.
Just because it's decriminalized, this doesn't mean that it's legalized. Remember more importantly that this November the residents of NJ will have the option to vote to legalize weed on their ballots!!!
We have faith that it will be legalized in November and we will all be living in paradise, feeling safe with our pack on the way home from a dispensary. *prayer hands*