A newly established Texas progressive group unveiled a campaign on Wednesday to put an initiative to decriminalize marijuana possession and ban no-knock warrants on the ballot in Austin. Ground Game Texas, a nonprofit led by former Democratic congressional candidates, isn’t exclusively focused on cannabis reform—but it’s made the issue a priority and is addressing it in the first of what’s expected to be many local ballot measures across the state. Austin, as well as Dallas, have already independently enacted law enforcement policy changes aimed at reducing arrests for marijuana-related offenses by issuing citations and summons. The activists’ new plan would take the reform a step further, however. The “Austin Freedom Act” seeks to end arrests and citations for misdemeanor marijuana possession within the city. Also, it says police cannot issue citations for residue or paraphernalia in lieu of a possession charge. The measure would further prohibit the use of city funds to request or test cannabis to determine whether it meets the state’s definition of a lawful product. Hemp is legal in the state, creating complications for law enforcement, as they are now tasked with determining if seized cannabis products are in compliance with state statutes.

Kyle Jaeger, Marijuana Moment, 06/30/2021 12:30:00

Open article: https://www.marijuanamoment.net/texas-marijuana-activists-unveil-decriminalization-ballot-initiative-in-austin/