Small Scale Decriminalization of Marijuana in Denton County
After a petition in Denton County received over 3,000 signatures, legislative measures were taken to create “Proposition B,” or the decriminalization of small amounts of marijuana. While the drug is illegal both federally and in the state of Texas, cities with populations of over 5,000 residents can operate under their own charters. Proposition B bans city funds from THC testing, denies police officers probable cause for search and seizure using just the smell of marijuana, removes citations completely for marijuana reside or drug paraphernalia, while also restricting police officers from arresting or issuing citations to those who have less than two ounces of marijuana on their person.
More than seventy percent of the vote was in favor of Proposition B. The decriminalization of marijuana in misdemeanor amounts not only eliminates the cost of drug testing, but also saves money and time for police resources. The hope behind this decision is to decrease the arrests for small amounts of marijuana, especially for people of color. Additionally, those who engage in recreational marijuana use will not receive a citation for carrying misdemeanor amounts. While it changes things for the citizens of Denton, marijuana has also been decriminalized in small amounts in Elgin, Killeen, Harker Heights, and San Marcos.
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