TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Instead of passing an ordinance that would require law enforcement to issue a civil citation to someone possessing small amounts of marijuana, Leon County commissioners unanimously decided to pass a resolution.
The original option on the table would have made it mandatory that someone caught with a 20 grams of weed or less isn't arrested.
Leon County Commissioners decided to instead create a resolution to allow officers to decide how they respond to simple possession cases.
A unanimous decision to pass a resolution NOT an ordinance. The difference is a resolution isn’t as enforceable as an ordinance (stay tuned for a better explanation as explained by an actual attorney) @abc27— Jada E. Williams (@JadaEWilliams) March 22, 2022
State Attorney Jack Campbell says in the last three years the only people arrested and prosecuted for simple possession were also arrested and prosecuted on other charges.
A review of the jail population from January 2019 through February 2022 found no persons detained in the Leon County Detention Facility with only a misdemeanor possession of marijuana charge, and the State Attorney contends that it has years since anyone has been incarcerated for a simple possession of marijuana charge.
Law enforcement and attorneys say regardless of legislation the county passes there's still stronger legislation they have to enforce.
Commissioners say they will revisit the idea of making civil citation mandatory if the state or federal government changes its stance on weed.