Joe Moody, a Democratic member of the Texas House of Representatives, has introduced a bill to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana in Texas.
He submitted the House Bill 63 on the first day of the pre-filing period for the legislative session 2019.
If the bill is approved, Texans who possess one ounce or less of marijuana would not be sent to jail but would be liable to pay a civil penalty of up to $250.
The bill would also eliminate a criminal record for possessing small amounts of marijuana.
There are speculations that the bill will succeed because the governor of Texas recently indicated that he is “open” to reducing the penalties for small amounts of pot.
“I would be open to talking to the legislature about reducing the penalty for [marijuana] possession of two ounces or less from a Class B misdemeanor to a Class C misdemeanor,” said Mr. Abbott.
Moreover, the Democratic and Republican parties of the state are in favor of the change.
In related news, Senator José Menéndez announced that he has filed a bill to allow medical marijuana in Texas.
“Senate Bill 90 (is) a comprehensive and compassionate medical cannabis bill,” his office said in a news release.
“The proposed legislation would increase the number of debilitating medical conditions that qualify for the Texas Compassionate Use Program,” they added.
If the bill succeeds, Texas would become the 33rd state to legalize medical marijuana.