Tag Archives: marijuana decriminalization bill

St. Charles drug crimes lawyer

Illinois is possibly on the verge of legalizing marijuana for recreational use for adults age 21 and older, perhaps as early as Jan. 1, 2020. This would mean residents of the state could possess up to 30 grams of cannabis and non-residents could have up to 15 grams. The decriminalization could also lead to expungement for certain marijuana possession convictions that were made based on the current laws.

Marijuana Possession Penalties 

Currently, if a person is caught with 10 grams or less of marijuana, it is considered a civil violation, which means no jail time and a maximum fine of $200. A first offense with 10-30 grams is a misdemeanor, which could result in a year in jail and up to $2,500 in fines. Anything over 30 grams is a felony, with conviction resulting in anywhere from a year to 30 years in jail and fines up to $25,000.

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Illinois Governor Works With Police to Eliminate Some Marijuana Criminal Penalties, Naperville criminal defense lawyerAccording to a recent news article, Governor Bruce Rauner has worked closely with representatives of the Illinois State Police and the legislature in order to essentially decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana. Lawmakers finalized Senate Bill 2228 on June 16, 2016, and sent it to the Governor, who signed it on July 27, 2016. Although Rauner failed to sign a similar measure into law last year, he indicated that he would be willing to sign it if legislators made certain provisions in the bill stronger, which they did.

The Practical Impact of SB 2228

SB 2228 eliminates any criminal penalties for possessing ten grams or less of marijuana. Instead, this level of possession will be a civil offense, punishable with a fine ranging from a minimum of $100 to a maximum of $200. If an individual has paraphernalia along with the pot, it is also a civil law violation with a $100 - $200 fine. Additionally, municipalities are required to purge citation records for marijuana possession every six months, unless local governments opt out of the requirement. This will help alleviate minor criminal records that formerly would have lasted for an individual’s lifetime. Finally, the bill has made driving under the influence of marijuana, as measured by the level of THC in a driver’s blood within two hours of consumption, a crime. Under the new law, there will have to be at least five nanograms of THC, which is marijuana’s intoxicating chemical, in a driver’s blood.

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Naperville criminal defense attorneys, marijuana decriminalization billA bill has passed the Illinois House and Senate that would decriminalize the possession of 10 grams or less of marijuana and moderate Illinois’s zero tolerance policy for marijuana and driving. Those found possessing small amounts of marijuana would instead be ticketed, and trace amounts of THC found in the bloodstream would no longer mean a DUI.

Possession

Under Senate Bill 2228, the criminal penalties for the personal possession of small amounts of marijuana in Illinois would instead become civil violations. Those found in possession of 10 or fewer grams of marijuana would receive a ticket and be subject to a fine of $100 to $200. These civil violations would be automatically expunged from the record twice yearly. Municipalities and local governments could choose to require a violator to attend drug treatment or impose other penalties.

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