Nearly four months after the state Supreme Court struck down Washington’s felony drug possession law as unconstitutional, Gov. Jay Inslee (D) signed legislation on Thursday to decriminalize simple possession, this time as a misdemeanor. The governor did partially veto one section, however. The new law, which takes effect immediately, reestablishes criminal penalties but requires that individuals be referred to a health evaluation and possible treatment for their first two violations, allowing them to avoid arrest and a criminal record. It also earmarks nearly $100 million for drug use disorder treatment, outreach, and recovery services across the state. At a signing ceremony Thursday, Inslee called the legislation “a much more appropriate and successful way to address the needs that underlie drug abuse.” 

Ben Adlin, Marijuana Moment, 05/14/2021 08:28:00

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