Monday, January 16, 2006
Will common sense prevail on the Marijuana issue?
Some people may have some sense about Marijuana use by collage age people. The City of Lawrence is considering a change in the way the town handles Marijuana arrests. Not many towns in good old Kansas would do this, but Lawrence is probably the most progressive town in Kansas. It may be one of the few towns were its people don’t act as if they just had a lobotomy.
See the article below:
Lawrence Journal-World, November 28, 2005:
“City commissioners will consider an ordinance that would make it possible to prosecute first-time marijuana offenses in Municipal Court rather than in Douglas County District Court.
Commissioners previously have agreed on the general concept but have disagreed on whether there should be a minimum fine attached to the first-time marijuana offense. Staff members have given commissioners two possible ordinances to choose from. Both would impose a minimum fine of $300 and would give the judge some ability to reduce the fine if there are “substantial and compelling” reasons to do so. The second ordinance, though, lists several factors that could lead to a reduction in the minimum fine. They include: financial status of the defendant; amount of controlled substance or contraband possessed; the lack of criminal history for the defendant; any voluntary drug treatment the defendant enters before trial; and the defendant’s level of cooperation with law enforcement.”
Of course there is always some foot dragging on issues such as this.
The Lawrence Journal-World, November 30, 2005:
“The issue of whether the city should impose a minimum fine for the crime of first-time marijuana possession will smolder a little longer.
Commissioners on Tuesday could not reach agreement on a proposal that would charge a $300 minimum fine for people convicted in Municipal Court of first-time marijuana possession.
Instead, commissioners said they wanted to study an idea brought up by Kim Richter, researcher of substance abuse treatments at the Kansas University Medical Center. Richter urged commissioners to make each offender take a court-ordered evaluation to determine whether the offender has a dependency problem. Those found to have a dependency problem would be ordered to receive more treatment.
In Douglas County, the evaluation would cost about $100. Commissioners said they wanted to learn more about the evaluation program.”