New Hampshire

Marijuana Decriminalization Deal Clears Key Senate Committee in NH

Marijuana decriminalization is one step closer to passage in New Hampshire after lawmakers worked out a compromise that police chiefs can stomach.

An amendment by Republican Sen. Jeb Bradley would remove criminal penalties for possessing up to three-quarters of an ounce of marijuana, less than the original bill's one ounce threshold. New Hampshire is the only New England state without decriminalization.

Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee gave initial approval to the bill Tuesday, sending it to the Senate floor with a positive recommendation. The Senate has typically resisted decriminalization bills.

The bill reduces the possible penalty for possessing small amounts of pot from a misdemeanor to a violation with a maximum penalty of up to $300. It also decriminalizes possession of up to 5 grams of hashish.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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