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Louisiana Lawmaker Says It’s Time for State Marijuana Laws to Change

Japser Juinen, Getty Images

Louisiana stoners could soon catch a break from the state’s ball-busting marijuana laws.

Representative Dalton Honore’, a former deputy sheriff, said during a recent interview that he plans to introduce legislation this session that would remove stiff penalties for marijuana possession.

“You know, I can remember the times I would arrest somebody for a cigarette of marijuana and they would get sent to prison for it,” he said. “But that attitude has changed. Twenty states plus the District of Columbia have medical marijuana uses. We also have two states that have marijuana for recreational use.”

Representative Honore’ recently pre-filed House Bill 130, which serves to eliminate a conviction for marijuana possession as part of the state’s “three-strikes” habitual offender law that damns offenders to a life sentence.

“The majority of the persons doing time under the Habitual Offenders Act, they were at one time arrested for possession of marijuana. Marijuana being used as a tool to sentence people as habitual offenders is wrong. It has crowded our prisons. The money we spending on that—it’s wrong!”

The goal is to sell the state’s old school council on his proposed measure by showing them how it can save the state money, said Honore’. It cost roughly $23,000 per year to keep a single prisoner behind bars – there are more than 40,000 people serving life sentences in Louisiana.

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