Pot decriminalization bill will likely be scaled back - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Pot decriminalization bill will likely be scaled back

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MONTPELIER, Vt. -

A Vermont House committee is expected to vote on a marijuana decriminalization proposal by the end of the week, but the plan is likely to be scaled back.

As currently written, the bill would institute civil rather than criminal penalties for possessing up to 2 ounces of pot and growing a small number of plants. Violators would face a $100 ticket.

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bill Lippert says the plant language will likely be dropped, and believes they'll settle on possession of 1 ounce as the cutoff limit for a civil offense.

"We are not going to resolve all of the issues surrounding marijuana, whether it's growing, possession, or some hope for legalization, we're not going to resolve all those issues in this bill," said Rep. Lippert, D-Hinesburg.

If the measure passes the full House, it's expected to receive the support of the Senate and governor. That would make Vermont the 16th state to eliminate criminal penalties for possession of small quantities. The measure would not legalize weed, as recent efforts in Colorado and Washington state have.

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