Gov. Quinn: Illinois Should Consider Decriminalizing Marijuana Possession Statewide

John Gregory / Illinois Radio Network

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (IRN) – Gov. Pat Quinn isn’t in favor of Illinois following in the footsteps of Washington and Colorado when it comes to marijuana.

While Quinn is open to discussing decriminalizing the possession of small amounts of pot statewide, he doesn’t think the next step will be to legalize its recreational use.

“No, I’m not for that,” Quinn said. “(Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s) proposal is for decriminalizing that particular offense—there’d be a ticket or something like that—but it wouldn’t involve prison terms or something like that. I think that’s worth considering.”

Chicago police officers are already allowed to fine people for up to $500 for possessing 15 grams or less of marijuana, rather than arresting them.

Other Illinois cities in which cops can issue tickets for pot possession are Aurora, Carbondale, Champaign, Chicago Heights, Countryside, Evanston, Oak Lawn, Northbrook, Stickney, Streamwood, Urbana and Yorkville.

Sixteen other states have made similar changes to their laws on marijuana possession.

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