Thirteen states, the District of Columbia, and the federal government have already passed laws making simple drug possession a misdemeanor instead of a felony, and the momentum appears to be growing.
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Just hours before the state's legislative session ended Tuesday, the California Assembly voted to approve SB 1449, Sen. Mark Leno's bill to fully decriminalize simple marijuana possession. The bill passed the Senate in June and now goes to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's desk.
While all eyes, red and otherwise, are on November's vote on marijuana legalization in California, the state Senate narrowly voted this week to reclassify possession of less than an ounce of weed as an infraction with a penalty of $100 rather than its current status as a misdemeanor with the same fine.