The measure adopted by the Senate Ways and Means Committee on Friday says possession of 3 grams or less of marijuana could be a petty misdemeanor punishable by a $30 fine. Three grams is equal to one-tenth of an ounce.
The bill would purge criminal records of those convicted of owning 3 grams or less if no other criminal complaint is associated with the record.
Drug Policy Forum of Hawaii Executive Director Carl Bergquist expects that the bill will be amended to decriminalize larger amounts. He says such a low threshold would still prompt arrests and produce the invoice ineffective.
The measure now goes to the full Senate.