Philadelphia officials decriminalize small amount of marijuana

Credit: Wiki Commons
Credit: Wiki Commons

Pot smokers in Philadelphia were given some breathing room on Thursday.

City Council voted 13-3 to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana before breaking for summer recess.

The bill, championed by Councilman Jim Kenney, will allow police to issue a $25 fine for the possession of under an ounce of pot instead of taking violators to jail.

The three Republican councilman — Dennis O’Brien, David Oh and Brian O’Neil — all voted against the measure.

O’Brien said he felt residents may get the idea that marijuana is no longer illegal in the state of Pennsylvania, and only state lawmakers should grant such changes.

Tashira Moss and her friend Ryan Damon were arrested on May 30 for possession of a small amount of marijuana. Moss went before Council on Thursday and told a full room that she was fired from her job after her arrest.

“I have a record now,” said Moss, who formerly worked at a rental car agency. “Now I don’t know who will hire me. It isn’t right.”

Pastor Darrell Robinson of Yesha Ministries followed Moss and spread his arms at the podium.

“If these young people are not able to get a job, what are their alternatives to take care of themselves and their family?”

“Hopefully,” he said,”this will stop some of the bleeding.”

Councilman Jim Kenney said he will write Mayor Michael Nutter a letter asking him to issue an executive order that will put the bill in place immediately.

While the 13 supportive votes prevent Nutter from vetoing the bill, he can still delay its passage by sending it back to Council for another vote, who are recessed until September.

“I think now that it’s clear that it’s veto proof and the summer is starting, there is no point in having 300 or 400 people locked up over the course of the summer,” Kenney said.

_____________________

Follow Tommy Rowan on Twitter: @tommyrowan

Follow Metro Philadelphia on Twitter: @metrophilly

Follow Metro Philadelphia on Facebook: Metro Philadelphia



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

MAP: New York City Street Closures August 22,…

The Percy Sutton Harlem 5K and NYC Family Health Walk-a-thon and Pakistan Day Parade and Fair will cause traffic delays and street closures in New York City this weekend. Plan…

International

U.N. nuclear inquiry on Iran seen making slow…

The U.N. nuclear watchdog appears to have made only limited progress so far in getting Iran to answer questions about its suspected atomic bomb research, diplomatic sources said on Friday,…

National

Violence-weary Missouri town sees second night of calm

By Nick Carey and Carey GillamFERGUSON Mo. (Reuters) - The violence-weary town of Ferguson, Missouri, saw a second straight evening of relative calm on Thursday…

National

Journalist James Foley's parents, after call with pope,…

The parents of James Foley, the American journalist killed by Islamic State militants in Iraq, on Friday called for prayer and support to free the remaining captives held by Islamic…

Television

Recap: 'The Knick,' Season 1, Episode 3, 'The…

The third episode of Steven Soderbergh's "The Knick" finds Dr. Thackery (Clive Owen) meeting an old flame and other characters embracing self-destruction.

Music

Webcast: Watch Polyphonic Spree live on Sunday Aug.…

Polyphonic Spree singer Tim DeLaughter sits with Metro Music Editor Pat Healy for a chat and then the big band performs live. It begins on Sunday at 9:30 pm

Movies

Matthew Weiner on directing 'Are You Here' and…

"Mad Men" creator Matthew Weiner discusses his movie "Are You Here," his history writing comedy and the tiny movie he directed in 1996 you can't see.

Movies

Michael Chiklis on his football past and 'When…

Michael Chiklis remembers playing football in high school and how that prepped him to play a coach in "When the Game Stands Tall."

NFL

3 things we learned about the Giants in…

The Giants claimed the Snoopy trophy in a battle of MetLife Stadium tenants Friday night. But more importantly, the offense finally showed some life in…

NFL

3 things we learned about the Jets in…

The Jets lost the Snoopy Bowl, 35-24, to the Giants, losing the trophy and local bragging rights.

NFL

Fantasy football draft guide: How to draft your…

Many are wondering if we’re entering a new age in fantasy football drafting — one where running backs take a backseat.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Giants storylines to watch

The Giants have plenty to work on as they reach the dress rehearsal preseason game Friday night against the rival Jets.

Sex

Big weddings may lead to long-term happiness

Dreaming of a big wedding? A new study indicates that the longer your guest list, the happier you’ll be in the long run. l A…

Sex

Online dating for every generation

Frank Jackson and his mother Maggie are like lots of modern families: They have dinner together regularly, keep each other updated on their lives —…

Wellbeing

Going green could be the key to getting…

If we could just pursue the things that would actually make us happy, we could help the environment too, according to a New York researcher.…

Tech

Siren: A new dating app that puts women…

Online dating can be brutal, especially for single women. Noting that many women hate wading through inappropriate messages and photos, two tech entrepreneurs decided to…