20 April 2016
The proposal—Senate Bill 2228—is a do-over from a similar measure that made its way successfully through the General Assembly in 2015, but ended up vetoed by Governor Bruce Rauner because he felt the bill was too conservative in its approach. The latest bill, however, was designed to appease the governor’s concerns over implementing a statewide decriminalization law by simply decreasing the amount of weed a person is permitted to carry without going to jail and increasing the fines associated with the offense.
Under the new legislation, anyone caught holding 10 grams of marijuana or less would be issued a ticket with a fine of somewhere between $100-$200. This is a minor adjustment from last year’s proposal, which allowed the possession of up to 15 grams and imposed fines between $55 and $125. Currently, any person busted with 10 grams of pot can be arrested and slapped with a criminal misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in jail and a $1,500 fine.
Perhaps one of the most important aspects of Senate Bill 2228 is that it comes with a provision that eliminates the state’s current zero-tolerance policy for stoned driving.
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Senate Bill 2228 Progress Information: