Baton Rogue, LA: A majority of state voters back legalizing and regulating the consumption of cannabis in a manner similar to alcohol, according to survey data released by the Public Policy Polling group and commissioned by the Louisiana branch of the American Civil Liberties union (ACLU).
Fifty-three percent of respondents endorsed regulating and taxing cannabis for those age 21 and older. Only 37 percent opposed the idea.
Sixty-five percent of respondents also expressed support for legalizing the use of cannabis for therapeutic purposes, while 56 percent of respondents approved of a policy replacing criminal penalties for minor marijuana offenders with fine-only citations.
Under present state law, first-time marijuana possession offenses are punishable by up to six months in jail while second offenses may be punished by up to five years incarceration.
This past summer, members of the state Senate narrowly defeated proposed legislation to reduce marijuana penalties for subsequent offenders.
For more information, please contact Allen St. Pierre, NORML Executive Director, or Erik Altieri, NORML Communications Director, at (202) 483-5500.