The capital of Kentucky, a state that lacks even a barebones medical marijuana program, has passed out of committee an ordinance regulating possession of small amounts of marijuana the lowest priority for law enforcement.
The public safety committee of Louisville’s metro council voted for an ordinance on Wednesday that redirects city police from pursuing small time marijuana possession. Notable exceptions to the ordinance include marijuana being sold, possessed by minors, used while driving, or related to violence.
“This is a pretty moderate law actually that’s intended to eliminate a large amount of unnecessary people going through the criminal justice system,” councilperson Brandon Coan told a local NBC affiliate.
“When you think about equity and justice, my personal opinion is that this should have happened a long time ago,” said councilperson Green.
State law defines possession of up to three ounces of marijuana a Class B misdemeanor, punishable with up to 45 days in jail. If you are caught more than once growing over five cannabis plants, you face five to 10 years in jail. That would still be the case, but under the ordinance Louisville police will no longer regard the apprehension and prosecution of such offenders a high priority.