National News

Bill would prohibit officers from enforcing marijuana laws in St. Louis

Posted October 25, 2017 3:12 p.m. EDT

— A bill set to be filed in the City of St. Louis would prohibit officers from enforcing marijuana laws, effectively legalizing the drug.

Alderwoman Megan Green says when recreational marijuana is available heroin and opioid usage drops. She says it is critical to recognize drug usage as a public health issue and not a criminal justice issue.

Under the bill, residents would be allowed to grow up to 10 marijuana plants in their homes. She also believes it would bring money to the city.

"I think it does have the potential to generate revenue for the city as well," she said. "We know the marijuana industry is a multi-billion dollar industry. If St. Louis can also, through recreation use, generate some revenue, that's a win for everyone."

According to Green, city officers are wasting time and resources arresting and citing marijuana smokers. Green says her marijuana bill will not only help bridge the gap between people and police but will also give officers the opportunity to focus on real crimes with victims instead of petty crimes.

"I am not in favor of Proposition P," she said. "I think before we go allocating more resources to police we need to look at sensible drug laws to take police resources away from these petty crimes and really put it toward real crimes."

Green planned to introduce the bill, which has six co-sponsors, to the Board of Aldermen during Wednesday's meeting but later said she would present it Thursday.