Martin O'Malley Expected To Sign Marijuana Decriminalization Bill

In A Twist, Gov Expected To Sign Marijuana Decriminalization Bill

Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) is expected to sign a marijuana decriminalization bill passed by the Maryland General Assembly Monday, the Washington Post reports.

In January, O'Malley said he was "not much in favor" of legalizing marijuana for recreational use.

"We've seen what drug addiction has done to the people of our state, to the people of our city," O'Malley said on the Marc Steiner Show, according to the Baltimore Sun.

But O'Malley seems to have changed his tune. One of his aides told the Post he would formally announce his support for Senate Bill 364, which decriminalizes possession of small amounts of weed by reducing the penalty for possessing less than 10 grams from a criminal offense to a civil offense.

The Washington Post reports:

Under a bill that passed the House of Delegates on Saturday, the act of possession would still be considered illegal. The civil fine would be $100 for a first offense, $250 for a second offense and $500 for any offenses thereafter.

A similar bill passed the Senate last month. The Senate is expected to sign off later Monday on changes made by the House.

Maryland lawmakers also approved an increase in the state's minimum wage on Monday, raising the rate to $10.10 by 2018. O'Malley is expected to sign the minimum wage bill.

UPDATE: O'Malley tweeted the following Monday evening:

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