Marijuana decriminalization discussed in Florida

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -

Florida's Senate Criminal Justice Committee is considering a proposal (SB 1662), filed by Sen. Jeff Clemens, D-Lake Worth, that would decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana. 

RELATED: Medical Marijuana

The bill would lead to civil penalties instead of criminal charges.  Possession of less than an ounce of marijuana would be a first-degree misdemeanor with a $100 fine.

A meeting was held Monday in Tallahassee to discuss the bill, but no vote was taken.

In March, the city of Tampa passed an ordinance to decriminalize marijuana.  Now, if someone has 20 grams or less of marijuana, a civil citation is issued with a $75 fine instead of a criminal charge.  

On Tuesday afternoon, the House Appropriations Committee and the Senate Health and Human Services Appropriations Subcommittee will consider proposals (HB 1397 and SB 406), filed by House Majority Leader Ray Rodrigues, R-Estero, and Sen. Rob Bradley, R-Fleming Island, that would carry out the November constitutional amendment that broadly legalized medical marijuana in the state.

Medical marijuana became a state law on Jan. 3 after Amendment 2 passed in a November referendum.

The version of this story was updated to clarify that the decriminalization meeting was held on Monday. 

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