Orlando closer to decriminalizing small amounts of marijuana

Medical Marijuana
Posted at 10:22 AM, Apr 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-19 10:22:00-04

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) - The city of Orlando is a step closer to decriminalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana, which other cities around Florida have done.

The city council's 4-3 vote Monday in favor clears the measure for a final decision May 9. It would make possession of 20 grams or less a violation of city code carrying a $50 fine for first-time offenders.

The Orlando Sentinel reports ( ) that some opponents are concerned the new ordinance would tarnish Orlando's family-friendly image. Supporters say minor pot arrests waste the time of police and courts and leave a harmful lasting impact on those arrested.

Under the ordinance, officers could still make arrests for small amounts of pot possession depending on the circumstances and the record of the offender.