Illinois Lawmakers Propose Pot Decriminalization Task Force

Democratic Illinois lawmakers are calling for the creation of a task force to pursue decriminalizing and regulating marijuana in the state. The proponents of the task force highlight the burden on the criminal justice system and the high costs of enforcing drug laws.

John Fritchey, Cook County Commissioner, says he will introduce a resolution on May 21st which will ask the General Assembly to create a task force aimed at legalizing the drug in Illinois. The task force would research the issue and eventually propose legislation to regulate the recreational use of marijuana. He notes that the process will take time and changes will not come about in weeks or months.

Starting in 2012, Chicago police have been given authority to issue citations to individuals caught with possession of up to 15 grams of pot. These changes have alleviated some burden on the Cook County jail system but more substantial changes are necessary.

Lawmakers want task force to push pot legalization, www.chicagotribune.com, April 29, 2014

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