New Hampshire House Moves Toward Legal Marijuana

On March 10, the New Hampshire House voted to reduce the penalty for possession of small amounts of marijuana. The bill now moves on to the Senate. Matt Simon is director of the New Hampshire Coalition for Common Sense Marijuana Policy. "We are organizing people to attend the Senate's public hearing which will be in April or May," he told the Valley Post.

The bill would decriminalize possession of less than a quarter ounce of marijuana. Under the current law, marijuana possession is a misdemeanor and is punishable by up to a year in prison and a $2,000 fine.

Under the new legislation, a person over 18 years old who is caught with less than one-quarter ounce of marijuana would be fined $200. Anyone under 18 would face the same penalty. A minor's parents would be notified and the minor would be required to attend a drug-awareness program and do community service.

Governor John Lynch said he would veto the bill. Simon urged people to call Lynch and urge him to reconsider.

The U.S. has a higher percentage of its people in prison than any other nation.

More information is at www.NHCommonSense.org

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