(FinancialPress) — Continuing with Friday‘s publishing in which the state-wide efforts to de-penalize marijuana were featured, today we continue after adjusting the microscope for a more close-up look – one that allows us to see which are the city-specific voting results and efforts that are bringing the U.S. closer to a greener future.
Changes by City
Two proposals were approved by Detroit voters last week. Thanks to them, marijuana dispensaries will have an easier time opening and starting their operations. It was all wins for dispensary hopefuls, as it was approved for the businesses to open within 500 feet of other dispensaries. They can also open within 500 feet of religious institutions. Repealed were the requirement of the city holding a public hearing before a new dispensary is opened, and the ordinance that allowed the Board of Zoning Appeals to review applications.
Rocky Ford, Colorado
Famous mostly for its melon growing, the rural city of Rocky Ford approved the retail sale of marijuana with a 53% voting majority. While medical marijuana sales were already allowed, this brings recreational marijuana to the picture. Colorado has made the plant legal on a state level. However, it being a “home rules“ state, it also allows municipalities to adjust regulation according to what the voters in the district prefer. This is an important step forward for the industry in the state, as several rural towns in it continue to have voting for legal recreational marijuana use on a pending status.
Lawrence Krasner was voted in as district attorney for Pennsylvania‘s largest city. The progressive candidate wants to end massive incarceration. One route he sees for that is to overhaul the city‘s handling of non-violent crimes – marijuana possession among them. Voted by 75% of the electorate, he‘s seen by cannabis advocates as an important step towards the reinterpretation of possession of marijuana as a crime by major cities.
Pennsylvania’s largest city voted for Lawrence Krasner to be its newest district attorney, a progressive candidate who wants to end mass incarceration. One way to do that, Krasner believes, is to change the way the city handles non-violent crimes, like marijuana possession. His election, which he won with 75 percent of the vote, is seen by marijuana advocates as a positive step towards major cities reforming the way possession of marijuana is interpreted as a crime.
Krasner has gone on record stating as follows: “We need to be much more victim-centered and survivor-centered when we think of these crimes, and not equate a bar fight with mass murder, or something that is incredibly intrusive, like identity theft, with other nonviolent crimes that really don’t affect anyone, like the possession of marijuana.”
The passing of the Athens Cannabis Ordinance considerably reduces penalties for cannabis-related misdemeanor crimes, even while recreational marijuana use remains illegal in the state. The ordinance eliminates fines of up to $250 for possession of 100 to 200 grams, in an effort to “redirect law-enforcement resources towards more serious and violent crimes.“