Council passes new penalty for marijuana misdemeanors

By WVUA 23 News Reporter Daniel Tomas

The Tuscaloosa City Council approved a variety of measures during the course of its meeting on Tuesday, July 12, including an amendment to city code authorizing citations for misdemeanor possession of marijuana.

Instead of spending time in jail, people can now pay a ticket. The measure was unanimously approved by the council.

“If people have small trace amounts of marijuana instead of having to send them to jail, we would rather just issue a citation,” said Mayor Walt Maddox.

The recent change to state law allows municipalities to issue citations for marijuana misdemeanors.

According to Maddox, this new amendment makes Tuscaloosa among the state’s first cities to align with the new state law.

He said the measure will help the Tuscaloosa Police Department save time and quickly get back to their duty.

The mayor expressed that the city of Tuscaloosa is looking to put harsher criminals behind bars, not people with small amounts of marijuana.

Beginning September 1, the Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission will accept applications for licenses to cultivate medical marijuana.

Click here to read more about the Alabama Senate bill.

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