August 27, 2014
Possession of small amounts of marijuana no longer considered a criminal misdemeanor
Santa Fe, NM – After considering in-depth their legal options, the City Council tonight voted 5-4 to pass outright an ordinance to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana.
After community groups collected the required amount of signatures to put the issue on the ballot, the City Council had three options at their meeting tonight. A) Put the initiative on the ballot, either in November or at a future city election; B) pass the language of the referendum directly into law, or C) delay a decision.
The Councilors voting in the majority argued that the will of the people was clear from the high number of signatures collected and that it was smart to change a policy that had ruined many lives.
Those voting in the minority, including the Mayor, wanted the referendum considered and decided by the voters at the ballot box.
After the vote, Mayor Gonzales said, “While I’ve been a clear and vocal support of decriminalization, I believed this was an issue that should be brought before the voters for an up or down vote. Either way, I’m proud of the City of Santa Fe tonight for continuing to be a leader in forward-thinking policy that improves the lives of the citizens.”