ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – Starting Saturday in St. Louis, if you get caught with a small amount of marijuana you will receive a summons like a traffic ticket instead of being charged under the more severe state law.

The new law was sponsored by Alderman Shane Cohn who was leaving for California Friday to run in a marathon and says he thinks pot smoking is a bad health decision.

“I think my message is always ‘just say no,'” he said. “I think I’ve made it perfectly clear that I’ve never even smoked cigarettes, let alone marijuana.”

Cohn argued that the bill is an attempt to “streamline city processes.”

“This isn’t something that’s radical. This is being done in other parts of the state of Missouri,” he added.

Alderman Sam Moore says the new lenient pot law is a step in the wrong direction for the city.

“I think we are lowering the bar and it just is an avenue to begin to legalize marijuana in the state of Missouri and the city of St. Louis,” he said. “You start with the marijuana and then it gets boring and you start doing something else and something else so it’s just another start and it’s against my religion.”

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