Northam supports marijuana decriminalization

Democratic candidate for governor Ralph Northam supports marijuana decriminalization

RICHMOND, Va. (WVEC) -- Virginia's Democratic candidate for governor is making a new push for the decriminalization of marijuana.

Lieutenant Governor Ralph Northam called for decriminalization in a new letter to the Virginia State Crime Commission. He says that current laws are "costly and disproportionately harmful to communities of color."

Northam has previously supported decriminalization of marijuana.

We reached out to the campaign of Republican candidate for governor Ed Gillespie. A spokesperson tells us, "While Ed opposes marijuana legalization or decriminalization, he is exploring reforms to make sure that penalties align appropriately to the offense committed."

The Virginia State Crime Commission is currently asking the public for written comments about simple possession of marijuana and whether it should be a crime. 

In 2016, 13News Now dove into the marijuana debate in Virginia. In Norfolk, city council members discussed the idea of decriminalization extensively. 

The comments are due by August 25. Details on how to submit your comments can be found here.

Study findings will be presented at the October 5 Crime Commission meeting.

© 2017 WVEC-TV


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