Councilor wants marijuana banned from parks, fines increased

Credit: istockphoto
Credit: istockphoto

A Boston city councilor is aiming to ban marijuana smoking in parks and wants to increase the civil penalty for possessing small amounts of the drug. 

At Wednesday’s meeting, Councilor Bill Linehan filed a proposed ordinance “regarding the public consumption of marijuana.”

“The public consumption of marijuana is a public safety issue in the City of Boston, in particular the Boston Common and other city parks,” Linehan wrote in the filing.

Linehan, a councilor from South Boston, proposed to ban the smoking of marijuana in Boston Common or any other park or playground under the control or owned by the city.

In a phone interview, Linehan said the proposal aims to target areas where he has received complaints from constituents, and that it does not includes streets or other public areas.

“It’s similar to how we manage alcohol consumption in public areas,” he said, adding that he’s visited parks with his grandkids and could smell pot. “The idea is not to try and further criminalize the use of marijuana. It’s actually to manage public spaces. … It gives police a chance at enforcing the consumption of marijuana in public parks and spaces.”

What’s more, Linehan wants to allow police to issue a $300 citation for possessing marijuana. The current civil penalty is $100.

In 2008, state voters approved a ballot measure to decriminalize possession of less than 1 ounce of marijuana. Since then, scores of other cities and towns have passed similar measures that add the $300 penalty and ban smoking the drug in public places.

The proposal was referred to a council committee that will hold a hearing or hearings on the issue before recommending changes and possible approval by the entire council.

Follow Michael Naughton on Twitter @metrobosmike.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Jeremiah Oliver funeral delayed until May for defense…

A judge has delayed the funeral of 5-year-old Jeremiah Oliver so that defense attorneys can carry out an independent autopsy.

International

'Barack Obama cheats on Michelle' claims Japanese politician…

A senior Japanese politician has marred Barack Obama's official visit to Tokyo with bizarre claims that the President cheats on his wife Michelle. Kazuyuki Hamada,…

International

British Royal family devastated by freak NY death…

The British royals have been left devastated by the death of Mark Shand, younger brother of Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, after a freak fall in…

Local

DA: Homeless man severely beat by men in…

Two former college football players pleaded not guilty to the alleged severe beating of a homeless man in Allston earlier this year.

The Word

Is Avril Lavigne's new music video racist?

Some fans say Avril Lavigne's new music video is offensive to Japanese people.

Television

Jodie Foster married girlfriend Alexandra Hedison this weekend

No need to rely on cryptic Golden Globe speeches for your movie star sexual orientation questions anymore: Jodie Foster is married to a lady. Foster…

Television

‘Survivor: Cagayan’ recap: Episode 9

It was only an hour-long episode, but there's a lot to cover this week. The drama of Survivor strikes again as the identity of the…

Going Out

Thursty: Revamped Audubon is back in action

Having been a long time fan of Trina's Starlite Lounge in Inman Square, one of my only complaints about the place is that there's only…

NFL

Patriot’s schedule comes up fair

Those looking for built-in excuses for the Patriots 2014-2015 season will have to look elsewhere, because their schedule came up fair. For the fourth straight…

MLB

Nava demoted, Victorino return imminent

  Red Sox outfielder Daniel Nava, who was batting a team-low .149/.240/.269, was demoted to Triple-A Pawtucket on Wednesday. "His struggles at the plate, I…

NFL

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April 24…

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April 24 version

MLB

MLB video highlights: Red Sox top Yankees, 5-1

John Lackey shines, Pineda ejected in Red Sox win

Tech

Spider-Man's web shooters get real

A German lab technician has created a working Spider-Man web shooter, which fires pellets and a harpoon-tipped, retractable fishing line instead of a liquid web.

Style

Pippa Middleton's Etsy pick: Golden Thread Jewelry

Get a look at the jewelry Pippa Middleton loves and find out how you can buy it too.

Parenting

What every parent needs to know to get…

Mom and author of "Small Talk," Tracey Blake, shares her five practical tips to help you develop your children's language skills.

Sex

Subway crush: Meet your soulmate on your commute

Read about a couple who has been 40 years after meeting on the train.