Tuscaloosa To Ease Up On Severity Of Marijuana Punishment?
Could Tuscaloosa soon be lessening it's punishment for those getting caught with some Mary Jane? The answer is maybe.
During the Tuscaloosa City Council’s Legislative Breakfast earlier this morning, Mayor Walt Maddox, and others in city government, highlighted several issues that are facing City Hall, including the possibility of relaxing the penalties associated with possessing small amounts of cannabis.
Let it be clear that Maddox and the City Council are not pushing for the decriminalization of the substance. In their view, none of the penalties associated with the misdemeanor of marijuana possession would be altered. However, someone caught with a SMALL amount of marijuana wouldn't necessarily earn them a stay in the county jail. Rather, they would receive a citation with possible fines attached for the infraction.
The mayor further elaborated, "That takes up a lot of hours and bedspace in the Tuscaloosa County Jail, both of which could be used toward more serious matters. With the collapse of the corrections system and mental health, our criminal justice system is overwhelmed. We don’t need to be tying officers up on this. We need to deal with this in a different pattern besides throwing someone in jail. This allows us to do that, to focus on other crimes to continue to make Tuscaloosa safe.”
What would be considered a "small amount" has yet to be determined. But it will be interesting to see how this all plays out.
For more on this story and other issues that were discussed read HERE